Men­tor­ship pro­gramme con­nects young lead­ers

Cape Argus - - METRO - Staff Re­porter

THIS year, 200 Obama Lead­ers em­barked on a year-long pro­gramme aimed to in­spire and equip emerg­ing lead­ers from across Africa to look at some of the most cru­cial chal­lenges in their com­mu­ni­ties, coun­tries and con­ti­nent.

The fel­low­ship was launched in Jo­han­nes­burg on July 14 to up­skill and as­sist young African lead­ers, by help­ing them es­tab­lish an ex­pan­sive con­ti­nen­tal net­work of re­sources.

This week, 10 rep­re­sen­ta­tives from this pro­gramme (from South Africa, Botswana and Namibia) will be en­gaged in crit­i­cal di­a­logues and vis­its to com­mu­ni­ties across Cape Town.

The lead­ers are set to en­gage with the com­plex and of­ten para­dox­i­cal chal­lenges within South Africa, and the pro­gramme will be fa­cil­i­tated by Com­mu­nity Chest of the Western Cape.

“The pro­gramme aims to train, sup­port and con­nect emerg­ing African lead­ers to cre­ate pos­i­tive change in their com­mu­ni­ties. We are proud to host these fu­ture lead­ers and help fa­cil­i­tate this con­ver­sa­tion,” says Lorenzo Davids, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Com­mu­nity Chest of the Western Cape. The theme of the three-day sem­i­nar will be: “In­tel­li­gence, De­vel­op­ment and Im­pact: Ris­ing to the Re­cur­ring Chal­lenges of Ad­dress­ing Poverty and In­equal­ity”.

Davids says this ini­tia­tive ties in with Com­mu­nity Chest’s over­all strate­gic fo­cus, and com­mem­o­rates their 90 years of ser­vice to com­mu­ni­ties in South Africa.

“We re­gard the ini­tia­tive with these lead­ers as an op­por­tu­nity to en­rich our own strate­gic fo­cus, with the in­put from these young minds,” says Davids.

Siyab­ulela Jen­tile, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Not in My Name SA, which en­cour­ages in­di­vid­u­als (specif­i­cally men) to con­demn the abuse of women and chil­dren, is one of the 10 peo­ple who will take part in this three-day jour­ney. He is also a mem­ber of the na­tional in­ter­sec­toral com­mit­tee on do­mes­tic vi­o­lence and femi­cide.

“Jen­tile em­bod­ies the nec­es­sary qual­i­ties to cham­pion change in his com­mu­nity and set this in mo­tion on a global scale. This is one shin­ing ex­am­ple of the high cal­i­bre of in­di­vid­u­als rep­re­sent­ing Africa,” says Davids.

“The con­ver­sa­tion will de­vise strate­gies to erad­i­cate poverty and the re­duc­tion of in­equal­ity, which form part of the fun­da­men­tal creed of Com­mu­nity Chest.

“These values will be the premise for the dis­cus­sion, guided by the South African Na­tional De­vel­op­ment Plan (SANDP) as well as the UN’s Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment Goals. In ad­di­tion, we will be invit­ing lo­cal young lead­ers to en­gage with the Obama Lead­ers and to shadow them on their visit here. This will al­low these en­gage­ments to de­liver more mean­ing­ful and fu­ture-fo­cused out­comes,” said Davids. |

OBAMA Lead­ers are at­tend­ing a three-day sem­i­nar on poverty and in­equal­ity. | SUP­PLIED

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