On Saturday the 30th of November 2019, Africa Unite held its 4th Annual School Club Red Carpet Awards at the Banqueting Hall in Civic Centre Cape Town. The Award Ceremony attracted more than 300 people including learners, parents, teachers, civil society organizations and local authorities.
The purpose of the award ceremony was to acknowledge the work of the school club learners by giving them a platform to showcase what they have done throughout the year as young change makers and future leaders for their courage, leadership, resilience and motivate them to continue the good work they do! In 2013, in response to an identified and noticeable lack of youth leadership and community involvement, Africa Unite initiated the School Club Programme under the slogan “My school is My Community”. The program is designed to shift the mindset of the learners, from being nonchalant about their status of living and the injustices which suppress them to being active change agents who see a better future in their school and communities. Therefore, the program further grooming the young leaders to take pride in their school and assume responsibility for their community development.
It is a replica of the government function, the schools involved have the opportunity to elect their own cabinet leaders, with three main themes – School, Environment and Community. Each cabinet is comprised by a president and his/her 5 ministers (president, minister of environment and health, minister of finance, minister of social development, minister of information and public relations and minister of sports, culture and entertainment). Those 6 are assisted by 30 parliamentarians who are responsible for holding them accountable. We take pride in how the School Club has grown this year. We have now established 13 School Clubs Nationally, 7 Western Cape, 4 KwaZulu Natal and 2 Gauteng.
During this event, not only Western Cape representatives were present, we also had two school club representatives who one is from Johannesburg and the other from KwaZulu Natal. In response to the social ills phased in each school and community, the different school clubs undertook various activities such as the Environmental and Gender-Based Violence March, Food and Clothing for the Orphanage, Cancer Awareness Campaign, Continuation of successful feeding scheme, Crime awareness campaign with the community, Lobby for book donation on Mandela Day, Educational excursion to parliament, Clothing Drive for the homeless, Anti-Xenophobia Campaign, Raising awareness on women abuse, Mental health awareness, Staging a silent protest against xenophobia and violence against women, Elders pampering day and Lobbying for textbooks.
School Club Presentations
The school clubs have done more activities than those outlined above and although they did a lot, each school was given an opportunity to only present 2 of the best activities undertaken in this period. There were 2 main speakers of the day, the CEO of the South African Human Rights Commission Adv. Tseliso Thipanyane who spoke about the role and importance of the inner struggle of the whole African continent and the role of young people in the world and how they should act and participate in making a positive change and in advocating for human rights. Furthermore, he emphasized and gave recognition to the work that Africa Unite is doing and fighting for human rights.
The second speaker was the National Deputy Minister of the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform Hon. Mcebisi Skwatsha who acknowledged the work of Africa Unite and how it fits to their department as they have a mandate to work in rural areas. He further reminded the audience on the importance and power the work done by young people holds in liberating South Africa and Africa as a whole. Nelson Mandela himself was under 30 when he started his movement.
During the performance, young performers from the Africa Unite Singamalika (young warriors) program sang, danced and recited poems. In one of the poems, the young boy spoke on what they go through as young black boys in South Africa seeing the so-called heroes “Dads” beat up women/their mothers to nurse their egos. The second poem was narrated by a young girl who took us on a journey of a young girl who has been mocked and played by those she thought loved her. It was indeed a great performance to watch from the 10-14 aged group of young warriors.
The most important part of the evening was the award ceremony which was given to different categories as follows:
- Best school club sponsored by Zahid Badroodien
- Best President sponsored by Dr. Spiwo Xapile
- Best Parliamentarian sponsored by Government Communication & Information System (GCIS)
- Best Minister of Health and Environment Sponsored by Bruce Baigrie Climate Change Activist
- Best Minister of Finance sponsored by BSI
- Best Minister of Sports and entertainment sponsored by Cape Town Museum
- Best Minister of Social Development sponsored by Government Communication & Information System (GCIS)
- Best Minister of Information and communication sponsored by Government Communication & Information System (GCIS)
- Best Minister of Education sponsored by Government Communication & Information System (GCIS)
- Best Patron and Matron sponsored by Africa unite
- Best Minister of Defense and security sponsored by Government Communication & Information System (GCIS)
- Most improved School Club sponsored by Africa unite
- Most diverse School Club sponsored by Africa unite
- Best networking School Club sponsored by Africa unite
- Best Stakeholder sponsored by Africa unite
- Grade 11 certificates (16 kids) Sponsored by Thabo Modise
- Best Acts of kindness School Club sponsored by Africa Unite
- Most innovative School Club sponsored by Solidarity Campaign
- Best Public Education and Outreach School Club sponsored by Western Cape Provincial Parliament
- Best Good Governance School Club sponsored by Independent Electoral Commission (IEC)
- Best Outstanding Leader sponsored by Coach Matika
- Best School Club that raised more awareness on Xenophobia sponsored by Father Rampe Hlobo (Jesuits South Africa)
- Best Peer Educator Outreach Program sponsored by Africa Unite
The award ceremony was a great success and Africa Unite would like to thank the City of Cape Town for providing the venue and further support from Wakefield Rotary Club, DKA, CCFD, friends of Africa Unite Marita and O’Malley Family. Without their support, this event could not have materialised.
For more pictures please follow the link: https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10156404028946372&id=94409681371