KwaZulu-Natal Africa Unite School Club excel’s at Annual Leadership camp.

On the weekend of the 2nd to 4th of August, Africa Unite hosted their Africa Unite School Leadership camp for the school club in KwaZulu-Natal. The camp took place at Vuleka Trust Centre in Hillcrest, Pine Town.

During the weekend, we hosted our club members from Ikusasalentsha High School (Inanda), Kwadinabakubo High School (Molweni-Pinetown) and Lamontville High School (Lamontville) in KwaZulu Natal. Our school clubs are based in communities which are plagued by poverty, gangsterism, high rate of teenage pregnancy, drug and alcohol abuse, lack of proper schooling infrastructure and poor basic service delivery; from textbooks delivery to water and electricity. These factors create an overall low academic work performance.

Africa Unite brought our young leaders together at Vuleka Trust Centre in Hillcrest Pinetown with a staff that ensured a successful training by providing a conducive and comfortable learning environment. The purpose of the camp was to provide a space for the youth to sit and engage with the issues which they are battling with at school and in their surrounding communities. They were also capacitated to understand their roles and responsibilities as cabinet members and parliamentarians of their respective clubs. After the training, the learners were tasked to come up with solutions to eradicate the social issues they are facing.

Africa Unite Facilitator welcoming the learners.

Moreover, the students hosted were those with passion to drive change at high school level, engage with the content that is geared towards problem solving, expand their knowledge of Africa Unite as well as Africa Unite School Club and to expand their Leadership skills. The aim is to equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge so as to create change in their respective schools and communities.

Additionally, the camp exposed the learners to innovation, design thinking and how to apply action as a social change driver.

The training was facilitated and co-facilitated by a team that was active in their respective communities, who gave great insight, a combination of both expertise and lived experiences, who gracefully commanded respect and interactions from the students       

One the first day, the participants were warmly welcomed by Zenani and Hlengiwe from Vuleka Trust Centre, who offered great service and assured the participants of having a great stay at the centre.  

The training geared off in a showstopper of an ice breaker for driving critical thinking and emphasized the importance of participants to make effective use of listening as a skill to interpret the given instructions also provoking cognitive development.

Africa Unite Facilitator engages with the learners on Social Emotional Learning

After leaving the participants breathless with an interactive ice breaker, there was a dialogue pivoting around how we can shift our perspectives. Participants were then paired and asked to introduce themselves to the person they were paired with. They shared what they like about themselves, what they don’t like and what they believe people think of them. Following this, participants went back in the circle, where at random participants were asked to share what they know about the person being paired with.

Moreover, the learners were educated on the origins of Africa Unite and the School Club, so they could understand the work in which the organisation is focused on and the School Club program in greater detail. Following this, the learners broke into groups and worked on their problem tree, where the learners identified the hotspots they have in their schooling environment. The presidents of each clubs shared this with the rest of the learners and thereafter, day one was wrapped up.

Day two kicked started with a workout 6am in the morning for the learners to feel energised and get ready for the day. The official proceedings of the day began at 9am where the learners were showed a presentation on Good Leadership. The presentation outlined leadership characteristics and different leadership styles (democratic, autocratic, strategic etc). The learners were highly engaged during this, with the learners understanding that within their cabinet positions in the school club, they are of the same value as the cabinet members within the South African Government. When asked of what they understood about leadership after the presentation ,their responses were given as positively approaching problems, influencing others while knowing when and how to follow, considering doing things differently, and nurturing effective working relationships, contribute to a spirit of team work and cooperation and making appropriate decisions even under pressure. This activity tapped into understanding the different leadership styles; being autocratic-making decisions without consulting others. Following this, to further expand their understanding of the structure of the school club, the learners played a game called guess who. Participants were given the opportunity to read a card describing the functions of the cabinet and for the rest of them to guess which minister it is. This game allowed them to understand the structure of the cabinet, their functions and how they worked together.

Moreover, following their capacitation on their portfolios, there was a discussion held on how them as cabinet members and parliamentarians can curb the social ills they face in their schools and communities. Solution were thrown right in, from creating awareness campaigns and events to address these issues, having educational distributional materials, inviting different stage holders etc. More innovative or outside the script ideas ranged from having smoke detectors at school to alert school authorities on those who smoke on school grounds, random police raids during school for drug searches, having feeding schemes so those selling drugs to afford lunch. This was an inkling of the many innovative ideas which would help combat the social ills faced in schools and communities in KwaZulu-Natal.

In addition, to gage the knowledge the learners had acquired during a long day of training, the learners were separated into their schools and asked to present what they had learnt in the camp so far. The learners were highly innovative in their delivery, as some performed a poem and others a skit which depicted everything Africa Unite and the School Club program is dedicated to eradicating. At the end of the night, our participants from KwaDinakwakubo won the performances with an outstanding depiction of all they had learnt throughout the weekend.

Winners: KwaDinakwakubo High School

On the final day, our invited guest, Brian Mhlongo from Health Systems Trust who educated our members on public health care systems. He touched on the lack of privacy in public clinics and the lack of passion from the nurses which strips one from their right and dignity. To tackle this, health systems has developed the Chronic Central Medical Dispense, which is to aid chronic patients; especially the elderly, to collect their medication at Dischem, Clicks, Churches and local councillors. This is a system that the learners are going to educate their family members and community members about through their work within the school club. Thereafter, the learners then broke into their respective schools and drafted their year plan outlining the following: identifying the problem, plan an event/activity, identify month of event/activity, delegating the minister responsible and resources. 

Overall, the camp was successful, the learners were adequately capacitated and left highly educated on their roles and responsibilities of cabinet members and parliamentarians. Our leaders are now ready to tackle the social ills they have identified to be crippling their school.  

2019 KwaZulu-Natal Africa Unite School Club.

Africa Unite would like to thank Vuleka Trust Centre for their warm hospitality, as well as all the schools and parents who allowed us to work with such driven and bright learners.

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Africa Unite and International Rivers open up a dialogue on the Inga Project in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

On the 3rd August 2019 Africa Unite and International Rivers held the Grand Inga Project Dialogue at 6 Spin Street, Cape Town. The dialogue focused on the Grand Inga Project – its origins, impacts on South Africa and the DRC, and the energy future for both the DRC and SA. This dialogue was engaged to bring together people to share their expertise and knowledge with Congolese citizens residing in South Africa and South Africans, to raise awareness, and empower citizens to ask the right questions, and inspire them to get involved in the energy debate. The event gathered more than 50 people.

3 guest speakers were invited: the first speaker was Ange Asanzi, member of International Rivers, the second one was Salomé Elolo member of Synergie des Femmes Solidaires (FESO), and the third speaker was Keamogetswe Seipato from Alternative Information & Development Centre (AIDC).

Ange Asanzi spoke about the Inga Project and energy justice for the DRC. She went into details on the complexities in Africa including: climate uncertainties, political instability, and colonial legacy of dams, centralized power, and technology advancements. The main areas of concern were:

  • The funding of the project: banks, South African government, China and Spain. 
  • The project is costly – and when Eskom is suffering financially, why is it viable to open up another project?
  • Various obstacles

She concluded and questioned the audience, why building a new dam when the first two dams, Inga 1 and 2 are working at a less capacity. Not a single city or village between the dams and Kolwezi is connected to the power grid (86% of DRC’s population has no access to electricity).  The energy harvested in the DRC still leaves Congolese in the dark because it is sold to other countries.

Ange Azasi (International Rivers) introducing the Inga Project

Salome Elolo is an African Woman from the DRC and a member of the Synergie des Femmes Solidaires. She spoke of what is happening on the ground in the DRC, where the community is experiencing a black out of information around the project. She expressed the pain and consequences for their communities, family and women from Inga projects 1 and 2. “We are rich in minerals, but the cost is our blood” – she repeated. The people of the DRC are demanding to restore Inga projects 1 and 2 before the Government starts Inga 3.

Keamogetswe Seipato spoke of the Macro factors pushing the Inga project, where governments and states have become the lubricant of corporations. This project is driven by the top 1% against the pain and determined for the majority of others. She explored how history shows that promises have not been kept in the past. She identified the conversations about electricity have shifted from nuclear to hydro power – but the same people are benefiting. She reiterated: “why is hydropower and dirty power on the cards” – when there are so many clean sustainable and better energy easily available and can be shared with the world.

The three presentations from the speakers raised a lot of questions amongst the participants such as people wanted to know how does International Rivers inform communities, raise awareness? If they would only focus on Inga Project, or also advocate against others dams for the protection of rivers. And how can they, as citizens, make a change?

Africa Unite Facilitator

The Congolese community felt like they have had suffered enough from history.

After a long fruitful discussion, the following recommendations were made:

  1. Engage with the government, put pressure on the political agenda, have a bottom-up approach.
  2. There must be transparency on the project and organizations.
  3. Organize marches, where they claim their rights.
  4. Use Inga1 and 2 at their full capacities, before launching Inga 3.
  5. Resolve the lack of electricity in Congo first, before selling electricity abroad.
  6. Make a petition, memorandum to present at the parliament.
  7. Engage with communities, advocate for their needs.
  8. Empower the Congolese who have suffered from history.
  9. Provide sustainable energy for the lack of electricity in Africa.
  10. Come together, united as Africans, with activists, communities, organizations, and governments.
  11. Work with Congolese Human Rights organizations.

In conclusion, the participants were thankful to Africa Unite and International Rivers for creating such an informative platform with informative and engaging speakers. The discussion brought solutions to the Congolese community on how they can be actor of change and brought people together as a unity of the African continent. The dialogue gave birth to critical thinking which brought people to question the political agenda behind the Inga Project which led to the writing of a memorandum which will be given to the parliament, as the voice of people.

Participants involved in the Inga Project Dialogue.
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30 Seconds Tournament Fundraiser for the Africa Unite School Club.

Africa Unite relies heavily on donations to continue operating the School Club. Therefore, on the 2nd of August we hosted a 30-seconds tournament as a fundraiser at Seedspace on 8 Spin Street, Cape Town. Ultimately, during the fundraising 100% of the proceeds will go towards School Club operations for the rest of the year.

Participants could buy the R50 tickets online, or at the door, and there were refreshments for sale throughout the event. Teams of 4 could enter the tournament and played 30 seconds against each of the other teams which had yet to lose a game, until there was only one team left.

Participants of the 30 Second Tournament

 The evening went well, with around 60 people participating in the tournament. Our online ticket page had 98 visitors over the time of its active operation, with 58 people coming straight from the link we forwarded. 14 people found the page through google, 14 through Facebook, and 2 through Instagram. From these hits on the site, we sold 12 tickets, and two people made donations, this all came to a total of R624. This should bring the online total to R596, because Quicket charges 4.5% of the revenue to NGOs for the use of their online payment services. In terms of at the door and refreshment sales, we made R4850. Therefore the event, in total, grossed R5446. However, it cost AU R600 to host the event, therefore the amount raised towards the running of Africa Unite’s school club came to: R4846.

Overall, people had a great time, and when guests were leaving many recommended that it be a reoccurring event.

Teams playing cards as they waited for the results

A big thank you needs to go to all the organisations who made this evening possible. Seedspace, a start-up hub and co-working space located in the CBD on the historical Church Square, who generously allowed us to host our event in their venue; Springfield Winery, Robertson Winery, Rooiberg Winery, and Saggy Stone Brewery, for the refreshments that they donated; and finally all those who chose to attend and buy tickets, because without their generosity there would have been no event.

The money raised will be put towards all the operations of the school clubs in the coming months, all of which will be posted on this blog if you want to keep up with the activities and programmes run by the learners in their communities.    

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Economic Justice Literacy: An eye opener for Africa Unite Peer Educators

An eye opener for Africa Unite Peer Educators

On the 22nd and 23rd of June 2019, Africa Unite hosted a 2-day residential Economic Justice Literacy training at Umhlanga Durban Accommodation in Durban. The training was attended by 25 Youth Human Rights Peer Educators from diverse backgrounds within KwaZulu Natal Province. This training was aimed at mobilizing and capacitating our peer educators on how the economy works, power dynamics and its impact on young people’s daily lives.

The training was facilitated by Mr Mervyn Abrahams (former Director of PACSA)   

During the session, the facilitator covered the following topics:

  • Economic justice literacy
  • Economic theories (capitalism, communism and socialism)
  • Economics and its model of development
  • How an economy works
  • The power dynamics inherent in an economic system
  • The role of Africa in the global economy

In exploring the education system in South Africa, through a simple exercise of drawing a set up of a classroom, the participants discovered that often there is a social order which has been put in place to create fear of authorities. Often the majority of people do not interrogate why a certain social order has been put in place. Hence, when the people start thinking out of the box, it becomes a threat to the social order.

The facilitator explained that the economy is about management of a household, he used a family as an illustration (Husband, wife, children etc.).The allocation of resources among the family members is to make everyone happy. However, the need of the family is unlimited and yet the money is limited. Although the family members would expect to receive as per need, the provider will make many considerations before responding to their needs and wants.

The participants learned the following economic theories: (1) that capitalism is based on the accumulation of wealth by few and they distribute to the rest by exploiting workers – they do not want government to be involved. (2) According to Karl Marx, the wealth must be in the hands of the population and the government must not be involved; The Marxist theory of cultural hegemony associated with Antonio Gramsci is the idea that the ruling class can manipulate the value system, however there is a counter-hegemony which attempts to dismantle hegemonic power, meaning a confrontation and opposition to the existing status quo by observing other spheres of life such as history, media, music. Etc.; (3) John Maynard Keynes, his theory is for the idea that government should intervene to stimulate demand and pull the global economy out of depression by creating jobs as there is a high level of unemployment.

From the above theories, our peer educators understood that there are no easy solutions to the economy. During the presentation, they also understood who is behind the economic activities such as land, raw materials, sea, infrastructures, labour, electricity, mining etc. Investors play a big role in supporting the economy. In South Africa, there are two kinds of investors, foreign (Europe and China) and local investors. Some of the critical conditions investors consider before investing are elements such as infrastructures, electricity, policies, political stabilities, materials, labour force and the market (consumers).

During the discussion, Mr Mervyn showed the role played by the financial institutions in the economy. In South Africa, contrary to many other countries, The Reserve Bank is being controlled by individuals. Often, the reserve bank keeps the inflation high which affects the borrower as the credit and bonds increase which in turn reduces job creation. Thus, explains why we have high unemployment rate among young people (55% Rate). The mandate of South African Reserve Bank is currently a serious debate which is dividing the leaders (President and Vice President) within the ruling party.

This topic generated a lot of discussion amongst young people who were interested to know more on the topic. The facilitator was obliged to give a brief political background on how South Africa was liberated through various negotiations which led to the final agreement in CODESA. One of the clause in the constitution was the respect of private property, which is one of the key element in the capitalist system.  

He also explained the idea behind the Land Act of 1913 where black people were not allowed to own or buy land. Majority of black people were allowed only 7% of the land and the rest of fertilised land was given to the white minority.

Looking at the importance of the content covered during the training, all the peer educators present agreed that they did not want this to remain a talk show and therefore agreed on the following actions:

  • To establish a youth economic forum comprised of the youth from different backgrounds to promote youth participation to influence policies
  • The group to undertake baseline research such as data on youth unemployment in townships and similar baseline research
  • More engagements with peers and communities on the economics of South Africa to create a culture of economic sustainability and curb ignorance on economic issues.
  • The group agreed to meet monthly at Moses Mabhida Stadium where a suitable venue was already given to Mr Mervyn (The facilitator) for ongoing youth gatherings.  
  • Africa Unite Durban office will publish a monthly calendar from July to December 2019 which will be distributed to youth from different backgrounds in the province in order to attract more young people.
  • The structure will try to work with other legislative and academic bodies.

All participants mentioned that the training was an eye opener as most of the issues raised were unknown to them. They do not want to be bystanders; they want to play a role in their respective communities. They were grateful to Africa Unite for the opportunities presented to them in order to have a general knowledge on the economy and its impact on their lives. Furthermore, the youth thanked Mr Mervyn Abrahams for making the economy interesting and easy to understand.

As Africa Unite, we are hoping that we will soon take the Economic Justice Literacy training to the Western Cape Province.

Additionally, We would like to thank our partner Misereor, DKA and CCFD for their contribution. .

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Africa Unite Participates in the European Development Days 2019 in Brussels.

The 2019 edition of the European Development Days kicked off on the 18th – 19th of June 2019 at the Tour and Taxis venue in Brussels, Belgium under the title: Addressing inequalities: building a world which leaves no one behind. Under this theme, the African continent was on the spotlight as the continent has always been deemed the mother of all inequalities. Each year, the global development community is invited to contribute directly to the official EDD programme by proposing activities and sessions. The forum fosters a true spirit of partnership with all development actors. Since its launch in 2006, the forum has been an incubator of new ideas to bring about real change towards a poverty-free, sustainable and fairer world, where everyone has the opportunity for a decent life.

The European Development Days (EDD) highlight Europe’s commitment to building a sustainable and fairer world. The forum builds on the core belief that cooperation is key to achieving real change towards a poverty-free and sustainable world where everyone has the prospect of a decent life. An essential aim is thus to inspire the desire to work together in a spirit of true partnership through facilitating networking.

For the first time since the official launch of the EDD, Africa Unite was invited to take part in this year’s edition. The conference was structured around the three main themes: i. Why inequalities matter for sustainable development ii. Understanding the structural causes of inequalities iii. Working better together through more effective policies to address inequalities; and the 5 “Ps” of the 2030 Agenda: People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, Partnership. The focus was on promoting inclusivity and equality as a catalyst for progress towards global sustainable development. The forum attracted more than 8 000 participants from over 140 countries worldwide, representing 1 200 organisations from the development community. Participants ranged from Heads of state, human rights activists, business and industry leaders, policy makers, entrepreneurs, representatives from non-governmental organisations as well as academics. Everyone was given a voice in this open, collaborative and inclusive global platform.

Jean-Claude Juncker European Commission President delivered this year’s EDD2019 opening remarks. In addition, Commissioners Neven Mimica, Christos Stylianides, Marianne Thyssen, Pierre Moscovici and Mariya Gabriel also participated in different events. High level attendees High-level speakers and participants included: Her Majesty Mathilde, Queen of the Belgians; Paul Kagame, President, Republic of Rwanda; Jorge Carlos Fonseca, President, Republic of Cape Verde; Macky Sall, President, Republic of Senegal; Charles Michel, Prime Minister, Kingdom of Belgium; Lotay Tshering, Prime Minister, Kingdom of Bhutan; and Antonio Tajani, President, European Parliament. Tony Blair, David Miliband and Cesar Alierta were among the many other leading figures from partner organisations, the private sector and civil society that participated in this year’s edition.

Esteemed EU Delegates and African Presidents

Fifteen young leaders selected by the EDD from around the world were also invited to debate inequalities but also to exchange ideas and experiences with world leaders and key policy-makers. Among the selected 15, 8 were youth from African countries such as Ghana, Malawi, eSwatini, Nigeria, Burundi, DRC, Namibia and Zambia. Over 100 NGOs and private sector institutions exhibited their work during the 2-day forum. In addition, over 200 sessions ran concurrently during the 2 days with various themes and topics and participants had the liberty to move around and join any session of their interest. The topics covered issues of migration, political instabilities, gender inequalities, human rights, climate change, partnerships, agriculture and food security, youth leadership, achieving SDGs, inequalities in countries etc. One of the highlighted sessions was on how countries are copying with inequalities and South Africa was the case study. 2 Government officials from the Department of Justice and a professor from Stellenbosch University were invited as the guest speakers.  A number of issues were raised that are directly linked to the work that Africa Unite through its Youth is implementing in South Africa. During the closing ceremony, Magic System a popular musical group from Ivory Coast electrified the whole audience with their performance which gave participants time to refresh after 2 days of unpacking pressing global issues.

Panelist Addressing Inequalities crippling the African continent.

In a nutshell, experts tried to address the inequalities the continent faces. Proposing ideas and solutions to solve the issues. Despite the real progress that has been made, inequality is still is a major impediment to sustainable development, limiting life chances by restricting access to everything from education and healthcare through to energy and sanitation. The European Commission  also issued a document reflecting how to better address inequalities through EU development cooperation, notably by making existing development cooperation policies more relevant to addressing inequalities; mainstreaming the reduction of inequalities in their programmes and projects in partner countries; working more closely and effectively with partner countries, EU Member States and partner organisations; and building up a data and knowledge base around inequalities issues.

During these days Africa Unite had the opportunity to network with different stakeholders where we explored the possibilities of partnering. A follow up will be conducted by Africa Unite in order to explore these potential partnerships further. 

Africa Unite would like to thank the European Commission for giving us this opportunity to participate in this eye-opening global forum.

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Addressing dire Water and Sanitation conditions in township with Weert Rotary Club Netherlands.

As part of our community conflict mediation (CCM) programme, that focuses on strengthening and capacitating grassroots communities to address their issues through, community dialogues, partnerships, collaboration and mobilization of community resources – Africa Unite was invited by the Weert Rotary Club in Netherlands to present a water and sanitation project for Europe Township in Cape Town. For the past 5 years, Africa Unite has rolled out the CCM programme in Europe which is one of the most impoverished black communities in the Western Cape. Through its young people/human rights peer educators that are trained on human rights and conflict mediation, Africa unite developed a community profile, established relations with key stakeholders in the community, facilitated a series of community dialogues and assisted to follow up on some of the outcomes of these dialogues.

Weert Rotary Club members

It did not come as a surprise to us that the issue of water and sanitation is critical in Europe and the community identified it as an area that needed urgent attention.  Diarrhea, water borne diseases, rats, lack of drainages, lack of toilets, lack of safe space for children to play including the deteriorated community hall amongst others are some of the daily struggles of Europe Township residents. A number of recommendations were proposed by the community during our dialogues and Africa Unite has partnered with various government and non-state actors to address some of these challenges. As part of our awareness programmes in Europe Township, Africa Unite works with children and parents in a programme called Singamakalipha which focuses on the holistic child’s growth through various psycho-social support activities and with youth in our Human Rights programme where we have capacitated over 20 youth in this area to lobby and advocate on water and sanitation issues on behalf of their community.

Africa Unite Associate Brilliant Nyambi Presenting on current state of Water and Sanitation in Western Cape Townships

Following this background, on the 12th of June 2019 Africa Unite presented a proposal on how Weert Rotary Club can partner with Africa Unite and Europe community on a sustainable project that can address some of the pressing water and sanitation issues. The presentation was done at local hotel in Weert in the presence of over 30 Weert Rotary members including their chairperson.

The presentation of the proposal was well received and a few questions of clarity were asked and responded to immediately. The proposal was also preliminary accepted and Africa Unite is looking forward to partnering with Weert Rotary club in Europe Township. The Rotary club members were also impressed with the general work of Africa Unite and expressed their desire to work more with Africa Unite on other projects.

Brilliant Nyambi with Weet Rotary Club Member

Africa Unite would like to thank Weert Rotary Club for giving us the opportunity to present this possible partnership.

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Learners Unites against xenophobia at the Anti-Xenophobia School Summit 2019.

On the 15th of June 2019 Africa Unite hosted the Anti-Xenophobia School Summit, at the Tshisimani Centre for Activist Education in Mowbray, Cape Town. The following 8 Schools attended the summit; our 6 Africa Unite School Clubs; Dr Nelson Mandela High School (Nyanga), Hector Peterson High School (Kraaifontein), Masibambane Secondary School (Kraaifontein), Heideveld High School (Heideveld), Rosendaal High School (Delft) and Portland High School (Mitchell’s Plain). In addition, Gardens Commercial High School (Cape Town) and Elsies River High School (Elsies River) which are part of the UNESO MGIEP’s Digital Inter-Cultural Exchange and Libre programs;  also attended the summit.

The Anti-Xenophobia School Summit was aimed at sensitising the learners on the diversity of the experiences of migrants and the realities of the immigration process. Henceforth, this summit was to dismantle some of the myths surrounding migration which create the foundation of xenophobic attitudes which in turn lead to violence.  

We had 64 participants on the day  and in order to give the background on the migration issues and challenges which foreign nationals are facing in South Africa, 4 young speakers were invited who are migrants from Congo, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe. One of the speakers was a young refugee student who also performed his music which is based on his migration story. They all touched on the experiences as migrants which range from why individuals migrate from country to country such as the push and pull factors, their migration journey,  lack of integration, language barriers in the new countries, identity issues, emotional struggles, exclusion at school, difficulty obtaining refugee status which results in lack of job opportunities and other general stereotypes against them which creates a sense of otherness towards migrants.

Following the presentations from different speakers the learners were divided into four small working groups to discuss further the following questions:

  1. What are the push and pull factors of migration? Why do people migrate?
  2. Why do people in your community have negative feelings towards migrants? Why is this mainly towards black foreign nationals?
  3. How does migration effect your community? What is Xenophobia to you, and how does it manifest in your community?
  4. What do local officials have to say about migration? What have you heard people in positions of power say, and what effect does this have?
  5. What can you/your community/your school do to address the violence in your schools and communities?

Thereafter each group discussed the above topics and after discussion the group presented their findings to the rest of the participants. Each presentation sparked more of a dialogue between all the learners and  from this discussion.

The learners put forward the  following recommendations:

  • The learners recognised that while xenophobia is a massively complex and multi-layered issue which is unlikely to be resolved in its entirety, however they contended that it can certainly be minimised and combatted. To this end they proposed that each school needs to continue a similar dialogues in their respective schools to spread what they had learned through the summit and from their peers.
  • The learners emphasised that an African identity which is shared across boarders needs to be built in South Africa through Life Orientation curriculum at school.
  • An educational campaign on the positive impact of migration must be promoted within schools further creating awareness on the issue.
  • The schools need to develop some visible posters which promote social cohesion against xenophobia, racism and all other violence.
  • The learners will encourage migrant learners  to share their Testimonials as a method to education which can create solidarity and empathy.
  • The learners recommend that the Department of Education must declare that all schools must be free from discrimination, racism and xenophobia.
  • The learners recommended that politicians should stop making foreign nationals a scapegoat from their failure in service delivery. But rather hold government accountable, and promote Ubuntu and Africa Agenda 2063.

In conclusion the learners are committed to spread the information gained during the summit to their schools and communities.

Special thank you to Tshisamane Activits Center for  providing us with a free  venue, Speakers of the day, the principals and teachers who joined us throughout the day. And a thank you from the learners who participated.

For more pictures:

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