Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Social Cohesion Charter 2015

Dear All

A Commission for Social Cohesion convened to address the issues of both Xenophobic and Racial tensions that are prevalent in the country at the moment. The aim of the commission was to create a mechanism which would bring together the progressive views which the majority of South Africans have with regards to Social Cohesion. With these views, we would therefore draft a tool to be used for the implementation of long standing and effective programs that will address the key areas of which need urgent intervention, and leadership. 

It is with this that we present, the Social Cohesion Charter of 2015. We invite all who subscribe to the philosophy therein to sign the charter individually or on behalf of Organisations. We have several Organisations who have agreed to sign this far, and would appreciate your support in spreading this around the country and the continent. You can click on the link below to read the Charter:

You're welcome to sign  the Charter  electronically using this Google form:

Yours in service 

Patson Malisa 
Country Coordinator, South Africa
Network of African Youth for Development

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Meet the Reformist Social Venture

We had the honour of speaking to the Founder of the Reformist Social Venture, a project based in the Northern Cape, June Mokoka.

Here's what she had to share with us

Q: Please tell us about how your Organization started:
TheReformist Social Venture was founded in June 2013  after realizing that today’s youth have better education prospects, are better resourced in terms of technology, have far better opportunities to improve their lives and  yet they are the ones confronted with anguish, disillusionment and bleak economic conditions.
As its name suggests, the company was established out of the need to facilitate a new generation of independent thinkers, and provide them with quality and well researched knowledge that will further help accelerate youth empowerment for sustainable development. In our quest to create a paradigm shift in the dissemination of information, we produced SmartMoves Magazine. We featured content inspired by universal values of the Declaration of Human Rights and updates on the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals by the United Nations (MDGs.  Despite an influx of online developmental debates and engagements we failed to secure a positive commitment on subscriptions. As a result, in July 2014 the SmartMoves Magazine concept ceased to exist - Giving rise to Growing Smart Leaders.

Q: Which focus areas is it intended to address:
Amidst doubts on the positive strides many governments have made to improve the quality of education and recent negative publications, the continent’s education system is perceived poor in contrast to the  high-quality and relevant international standards. A community cannot achieve adequate social problem solving skills when provided with poor education. Furthermore, , e the youth will adversely spearhead the development process in their respective communities if not included and recognised as  i. Change agents who ii.  Inspire innovation and are iii.  Potent and composite to iv.  Stimulate intelligent problem solving and decision making
TheReformist has performed a thorough feasibly study and the following are areas identified as crucial.
Negative Image Of Africa
Food Security
Finding Employment
Quality Education
Access To Capital
Financial Crisis
Health-Related Information Services
Drug Use, And Other Risky Behavior
Climate Change Human Insecurity
Rural Underdevelopment
Armed Conflict
Migration, Exploitation And Xenophobia
Q: What inspires you to contribute to society and South Africa:
The daunting social challenges such as poverty, illiteracy, corruption, unemployment, Child Labour, Human trafficking, Health, Crime, HIV/Aids, Mental Health, substance Abuse, Malaria and other diseases, Violent Civil Protests, etc fed my vision.  My vision is to support and inspire young people to use these social obstacles and create opportunities for sustainable solutions. I mentor, coach and provide them with empowering tools that will enhance their development and advancement into future leaders who recognizes that change starts with them. In order to resolve all these socio-economic challenges we need well rounded and holistically developed young minds to steer the ship.
Our aim is to provide a tactical framework for youth participation as a necessary contribution in the success and sustainability of social, economic and political policies, projects, etc.  Our approach is dynamic and can be adjusted to a local context or according to the desired development intervention of a particular social change initiative. Based on the premise that; “in recognizing them as today’s assets; we support and provide them with opportunities to map their future as responsible citizens.” Our philosophy is to encourage logic in reasoning, in addition to rational thinking and prudence in approaching social issues.
Q:  What would you consider South Africa's role to be in contributing to the Post-2015 development agenda:
A sustainable society is possible, when a network of likeminded people take collective action between businesses; government and civil society to support each other. Moreover, I have a strong conviction that success in society is inextricably linked to a thriving youth.
There's so much to do, and there's never enough time. There are deep problems, painful problems -- problems that quick fix approaches can't solve.  South Africa needs a game changing leadership, especially in an epoch where emphasis is on growth and governance. We must incorporate the meritocratic youth into South Africa’s leadership structures in order to provide renewal and growth. The blending of promising youth leaders into  leadership structures will not only rejuvenate our country’s institutions, organizations and leadership offices, but will also offer new horizons and solutions to problems, resulting in more efficient and globally competitive institutions. This might propel South Africa's role to new heights in contributing to the Post-2015 development agenda.

Q: Do you have any projects coming up that NAYD members in South Africa could participate in the month of March:

 I am in the process of planning an employment creation summit; please refer to the attached document. Theree is not much reaction due to the following reasons.
i.                     This will be my first event and I have little experience in organizing an event of such a magnitude.
ii.                   I contacted the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture with the hope that they shall connect me with their youth component, especially because they have Trail Blazers and it would be an added benefit to put their talent and skills in to good use.
Any, suggestions as to how I can go about it would be most welcome.

To Connect with the Reformist Social Venture, you may use the following details:

Twitter:       @JuneMokoka

Monday, 23 February 2015

NAYD Speaks to NERDAfrica

We had the honour of speaking to the founder of The Network of Entrepreneurs, Readers, and Designers in Africa (NERDAfrica), Ms Tumelo Motaung.

NERDAfrica is a social enterprise dedicated to empowering youth and their communities through enterprise development, education and the arts, equipping them with tools to tackle challenges they face daily.

The name, NERDAfrica, seeks to reporpularise the culture of intellectualism among young people; to do away with ignorance and uphold the importance of education in realising the African Dream.

Here is what she had to say:
Q:Please tell us about how your Organization started:

A: The Network of Entrepreneur, Readers, and Designers in Africa (NERDAfrica) started at the end of 2013 as an impulsive move to bring people together for a greater, sustained good. There are so many people doing great things, really remarkable things. But so little of them are doing things together, and that is where we are weak as youth movements. Instead of working hand in hand to do more, we compete with each other. So with the network, I wanted to create links between young people, people in business, people in government, and the things they are all passionate about; things such as change. The approach we’ve taken at NERDafrica one that is specific to communities. We go into a community, find out what it is they need, and then gather manpower and resources to empower the community and assist them in building their vision.

Q: Which focus areas is it intended to address?

A: The mission of NERDAfrica is to build a network of young, intellectual leaders who are committed to development and economic participation on the African continent.

NERDAfrica strives to create platforms of collaboration between youth, youth organisations, government, and business. This long-term vision captures the central role young people play in shaping the future of Africa.
NERDAfrica's objectives are to unite young Africans behind efforts that:

1. Focus on community specific development projects
2. Foster sustainable relationships of collaboration
3. Use enterprise, education, and the arts to empower young people and their communities

Q: What inspires you to contribute to society and South Africa as a whole?

A: I love my country, I love my continent.  Love the people here, and I am always inspired by their struggles and triumphs. It is always so fascinating to observe a present born from a segregated past. How people get on with each day, how adaptive and progressive the South African nation is, how forgiving we are. It can’t always be easy, we see the setbacks every day. But it is the very fabric that holds the rainbow together, that is what inspires me to do something that will make it all better for all of us.

Q:  What would you consider South Africa's role to be in contributing to the Post-2015 development agenda?

A: I think South Africa is in a position to take up the reigns and lead the rest of Africa towards the goals outlined by the agenda. South Africa, and it’s people have been, as I said before, progressive over the past couple of years in contributing to the goals. I however believe that where we lack is most crucial, in education. Our education is not designed in such a way that the people of this country are empowered to take charge of their resources, to be in positions that directly impact on the development of areas such as healthcare and the eradication of poverty. The gap between the theory we learn at school and the practicalities we live with is still very large. I thus believe that the country should do more to improve literacy levels in the country.

Q: Do you have any projects coming up that NAYD members in South Africa could participate in:

A: In march of 2015, NERDAfrica will be involved in the InkFlow project, with is run by a young lady, Matokelo Magano. The programme falls under our education and arts portfolios, where we will be running a poetry, literature and debate competition with the aim of inspiring young people to use writing as a form of developmental expression.
In March, we will also be embarking on our very first call to action campaign, where we will be asking young people across the continent about their struggles and their triumphs. The campaign seeks to map out key issues in youth development, with an aim of gathering resources behind the initiatives to bring about change.
At the end of the year we will be handing over the very first library we have worked on at a rural school though Project Wonderland, a project aimed at improving literacy levels among young people. We are still collecting book donations for the primary school. Should NAYD members have books that are still in good condition that they would like to donate to the school, they should please contact me.

Q: In conclusion, please give us your favorite quote on development:

A: This is a tough one, but it will have to be the African proverb, “A single bracelet does not jingle.” This quote is a constant reminder that for us to make significant changes in our lives, we must find harmonious and sustainable ways of working together.

New Year Message from the New SA National Coordinator:

Dear Partners in African Youth Development

I would like to thank you for entrusting me with the responsibility of leading of the Network of African Youth for Development’s operations in South Africa for the years 2015 and 2016.

In these 2 years, I believe that a new force in the youth development circle will emerge from among us and it is therefore my honour to help consolidate efforts of all the subscribed organisations to achieving this.

I write to you today to extend a hand of partnership in the implementation of the program of action for our network. It is up to us to make this vision a reality for our constituency. Therefore I would like to request that you participate in one of the following ways:

1. Volunteer for the national planning committee, which will assist me in the planning and coordinating of proposed programs

2. Make available your organisation’s activities for the network to designate support wherever it is needed, and for consolidation of efforts in the network.

3. Avail yourself and your talents for programs that will be conducted around the country.

  Please feel free to engage us at any point in time with your ideas and thoughts. We are dedicated to the delivery of great service to you. We also plan on improving with every step, but it needs your contribution to do so.

Let Africa be Great

Patson Malisa
National Coordinator, South Africa

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

For a New Prototype of Cleaner, Greener Development

“The future is today…because somewhere on Earth, it is already tomorrow.” – The Future Book

The UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) also referred to as the Rio +20 or Earth Summit 2012, presents a sporting chance for the world leaders to take the bull by the horns and make bold decisions and commitments for a new era of greener, cleaner development.  Investing in renewable sources of energy, eco-friendly infrastructure and energy efficiency will not only create jobs and incite recovery, but also help tackle climate change.

The Planet has seen negotiations and counter negotiations, thus, at this juncture, it is hungry for bold political, environmental and social actions––for a new paradigm of sustainable development––embedded in our lifestyles and in the way we do business in the society. Making a real difference in this regard requires a creative range or blend of ideas and policy instruments––backed with actions––i.e., a mix of both the political and the practical.

What am I saying? The world leaders cannot do it alone. We as a society have a stake in ensuring environmental sustainability and promoting sustainable development. Think about food, how a home works, how we move from place to place; about how we communicate, how we run businesses, how we dispose of wastes, how we care for forests, etc. Every one of these areas, and lots more, is ripe for notable intervention that can save huge amounts of carbon from entering the atmosphere.

You may wonder why so much emphasis on sustainability and sustainable development. The official international environmental negotiations are not advancing as quickly as the damage we are doing to our Planet, and we still fold our arms.  We are well aware that the changes in the balance of nature portend grave threat to the security of our shared future. The planetary ecosystems are failing––and we know it. Hundreds of millions of young people will look for jobs in the coming decade––and we know it.  Yet, humanity still pays lip service to the quest for environmental sustainability and sustainable development.

Unequivocally, humanity consumes enormous amounts of energy, drain water supplies, and devour food and resource in an unsustainable way. Humanity's total ecological footprint was estimated at close to two planet Earths - in other words, humanity uses ecological services almost twice as fast as Earth can renew them. This causes climate change, which is threatening human life with rising sea levels, storms, floods etc. Unequivocally, if we knowingly continue to live in a manner, which harms and jeopardizes planet Earth, soon all the goodness the Earth has to offer us will be devoured.

To this end, therefore, it is pertinent to note that only a decisive and staunch commitment by both Dick and Harry will effectively ensure sustainable development. Sustainable development must grow in the economic, social and environmental spheres–in every nook and cranny of the world. And fundamental lifestyle adjustments are required for this to take place.

Consequently, the one word forecast for a more sustainable future is: CHANGE. We must start making less polluting choices. Low-carbon living is the key to our future; it will create less carbon dioxide emissions. More so, reducing our carbon footprint will not only help the planet, but also improve the quality of our lives.
You can start now to calculate your current emissions, so you can see how much you save in a year––you’ll be surprised how well you do! To calculate your emissions use the Carbon Calculator.

However, on a practical note here are several tips for you to employ, the more people that adopt this thinking, the more we heal our green habitat–– the Earth:
  • Plant deciduous trees to shade houses, since trees can remove fifty pounds of carbon from the air each year.
  • Buy Smart: purchase energy efficient appliances that display the Energy Star Label.
  • Turn off lights, televisions and other electronic devices when not in use.
  • Walk, bike, carpool, and use mass transit, as well as limit travel by using communication technologies.
  • Replace tungsten bulbs with energy-efficient fluorescent bulbs or compact light fixtures.
  • Purchase a fuel-efficient car or alternative fuel vehicle, like fuel cell car, solar car, etc.
  • Manage heating and cooling with timers and sensor controls.
  • Reduce the resources you use
  • Reuse resources as much as possible
  • Recycle as and when you can
  • Rethink before you buy and dispose

Although behaviour change is said to be the Holy Grail of sustainability, it’s in our best interest to change for good. By so doing, we will be more responsible, thus, safeguarding the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs. An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure!

The questions that beg for answers now are:
  • What lifestyle changes have you decided to adopt today in order to reduce your carbon footprints?
  • And, how are you using the innovative social tools that Digital Media provide to mobilize climate action(s)?

Thursday, 9 February 2012

inspire: Tread Lightly - Samuel Duru

inspire: Tread Lightly - Samuel Duru: Sustainable development is a model of resource use that will satisfy present human needs while also preserving the planet Earth for the bene...

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Invitation to NAYD South Africa members

An invitation has been sent to all NAYD South Africa members to become authors for their new country page. If you accept (and it has to be a google account) then you will be able to upload photos, articles, notices and anything else that you think is relevant to youth-led sustainable development. To add content, sign in using your google account at the top right, and then click on 'New Post'. You can edit or delete your post anytime using the icon that looks like a pencil. Instructions have been sent for writing BLOGS to you. Try it out!

ANYONE can leave messages on the chatline on the RIGHT side of this page or leave a comment on the BLOG by clicking on 'comments' at the bottom of each BLOG.