By Lwazi Nongauza
‘’Where there is no human connection, there is no compassion. Without compassion, then community, commitment, loving-kindness, human understanding, and peace all shrivel. Individuals become isolated, the isolated turn cruel, and the tragic hovers in the forms of domestic and civil violence. Art and literature are antidotes to that.’’ Susan Vreeland
‘’We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community… Our ambitions must be broad enough to include the aspirations and needs of others, for their sakes and for our own.’’ Cesar Chavez
These two famous quotes by the great global thinkers perfectly describe the decisiveness of 30 Activators who paved a new dawn for ACTIVATE!’s vision at the ACTIVATE! Youth Resource Stations at Alpha Conference Centre on the 20th to 23rd of April 2018.
The workshop mainly seeks to reflect on the meaningful work by stations and ultimately pave a new way forward for stations to be fully equipped for ACTIVATE! Youth Resource Stations that will be supported with internet, Personal Computers (PC’s), tablets, social entrepreneurship study guides, basic furniture, and youth relevant mix library content.
The main objectives for the ACTIVATE! Youth Resource Stations are to create valuable and accessible platforms that give a hand-up to an Activator who is running projects at grass roots level. Stations are also geared at providing key resources and information to enhance the preconditions for further education, employability and entrepreneurship among the activators and youth at large. Supporting youth to achieve their goals through connections to opportunities and promote spaces of engagement that foster collaborative solutions being other key objectives.
ACTIVATE!’s Chief Executive Officer, Chris Mentjies, digitally joined the three day long workshop that was spearheaded by Baxolise Dlali, Nathacia Olivier, Tebogo Suping, Bongiwe Ndlovu, Kim Barlow and Claire Gemmill.
The outlined organization’s big long term plans for the stations and the roles of ACTIVATE! Youth Resource Station managers are expected to engage in activities that inspire communities, provoke national progressive discussions, connect activators to opportunities and influence national policies.
Eastern Cape based ACTIVATE! Youth Resource Stations, Onke Jezile who runs homework club intends to use ACTIVATE! Youth Resource Station to equip kids in E-Goso Village with basic much-needed personal development and computer skills.
‘’I am extremely grateful to ACTIVATE! for the kind of support they have invested in us as Activators and South African youth at large. I, together with other young people in my area, will use the A! station as youth empowerment platform where Activators and other young people in my community can host events, development conversations, type CV and avail internet access support centers for job hunters.’’
Limpopo based Maphanga Moses intends to use the station to empower the disadvantaged young people in his community.
‘’The Limpopo based ACTIVATE! station in my community will use the resources to specifically support primary and high school learners. The internet access really helps us with our university to help the grade 12 learners to apply for tertiary institution and bursaries online.’’ Said Moses
ACTIVATE! intends to launch stations in different disadvantaged places of the country. In order to ensure that we have a proportional representation of stations at all times, interested qualifying Activators from rural and isolated areas are encouraged to apply to run stations.
KwaZulu Natal ACTIVATE! Youth Resource station manager Menzi Michael Qwabe who has always been trying to secure a sponsor for internet facilities, entrepreneurship theory support content and library amenities for young people in his Umhlabuyalingana, he strongly believes that the resources from A! Youth Resource station will have massive impact.
‘’I can assure everyone that the A! Station resources will efficiently and strategically be used as centre place that will empower all ambitious and emerging creatives, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, civil society leaders and students. These resources will now find it easy to amplify health awareness advocacy flagship project. ‘’ said Qwabe
‘’ Finally it feels really good to know that we will be able to continue best serving our people and communities without all the worry about inadequate resources. We will use the resources to empower distressed unemployment youth, young desponded harmful addicts, vulnerable members of society educational training support for teenagers emerging artists and innovators.’’ said Jiyane
ACTIVATE! Youth Resource Stations are part of a working formula where youth with will power and initiatives receive support that is relevant to their initiatives. The combination of people with skill and initiative connecting to relevant resources is rare in our country, where resources are not received by people that can use them and sustain the initiatives as they grow. These stations are not to be determined by people in office space alone, but Activators throughout the country can take a step of identifying a need for an ACTIVATE! Youth Resource Stations in their area and demonstrate the spirit of activators with or without start up resources.