The ACTIVATE! Change Drivers (ACD) programme seeks to create an environment in which a new social, economic and political force can emerge. The ACD programme is a toolkit for social change and is designed to EQUIP young leaders (who are passionate about driving positive change) with particular skills and resources, CONNECT these leaders to opportunities and each other, INSPIRE new ways of thinking and doing, PROVOKE meaningful dialogue and action, and to explore how they can INFLUENCE each other and the spaces around them.

The ACTIVATE! Change Drivers programme is a residential one and is conducted in 2 8-day modules offered at training venues across the country. Participants attend the 1st module during the 1st half of the year, and the 2nd module begins in July/August.

The 2 modules attended by participants, affords them the opportunity to deepen their socio-political understanding, explore non-violent strategies for justice and discover more ways to innovate, to explore our potential for ingenuity and to engage with relevant examples and case studies in Africa. The programme also presents the opportunity to unpack other hot topics, re-imagine the work young people are involved in and to assess its impact and reach in our communities and in South Africa. The work they are involved in challenges Activators to explore the depths of their own strength as well as their willingness to achieve goals for themselves and their communities.

In order to apply to be an Activator in the ACD programme, the following criteria should, as far as possible, be met:

  • Is a resident of South Africa or legally permitted ot be in SA
  • Has a grade 12 certificate
  • Has a strong sense of activism
  • Actively involved in and NGO/ NPO or is a volunteer or is running a social upliftment project or campaign or engages community/ ward councillor/ local government regularly on matters of social change
  • Mentors/ coaches young people
  • Is passionate about driving change in South Africa
  • Understands what is happening in South African society today
  • Seeks to/ hopes to develop community or start a project/ social enterprise
  • Is between the ages of 20 and 30
  • Actively wants to see new solutions emerge
  • Has a strong desire to connect with other like-minded, young people

We look forward to welcoming you into the ACTIVATE! network. The ACTIVATE! Network is made up of young people who see the value in small actions that lead to tipping points. In the programme, participants are welcomed to recognise that our cumulative efforts has the necessary make-up to effect meaningful Ripples and Waves of Change and this is achieved with an intentional and positive spirit of activation and activism – participants of the programme inspire others through their stories, their work, their contributions to society; they connect themselves to meaningful opportunities, to greater networks, to each other; they provoke new conversations, critical thinking, and strong desires to act.
The programme inspires young people to honour themselves as the young leaders who are exploring innovative ways of driving change, tapping into opportunities that elevate their work, their passions and ensures that as they rise, they take others along with them.


Frequently Asked Questions

I don’t have Matric or a post-school qualification, can I still apply?
Yes, however, your application will be reviewed to ensure all other criteria have been met.

How much does the programme cost?
The residential training programme is provided at no charge to participants, and all expenses related to travel and accommodation are covered. However, should the terms and conditions of your enrolment in the programme be violated, you may be held liable for costs pertaining to travel and accommodation

How will I get to the courses?
All of the expenses related to attending the programme will be covered by Activate. This includes your transport to and from residential courses. Transport, and other costs, related to carry out your projects are not covered by the programme.
Please note that transport will be provided from central pick up points in each province to your allocated training venues. Participants will be required to travel to these various pick up points at their own cost.
We will however cover the following costs for your residential training sessions:
– transport from central pick up points to training venues all accommodation all meals (breakfast, lunch & dinner)
The details of the various pick up points and pick up times for each training module will be communicated to successful applicants.

I haven’t run any projects yet, but I am passionate about making a difference. Can I still apply?
You can definitely apply. However, in your application you will need to motivate strongly about why you want to be in the programme and show that you are willing to be committed to taking action for the public good. 

I have full-time employment or am studying full-time can I still be part of the programme?
Yes! You will need to negotiate with your supervisor or lecturers to let you have time off to attend all sessions. Attending the programme could potentially be considered study leave. 

I am a full-time student, will the residential courses fit into my holiday schedule?
Unfortunately we cannot guarantee that the courses will fall directly into your university holidays. You may need to negotiate a leave of absence in order to attend all aspects of the programme. 

When will I find out if my application is successful?
Shortlisted candidates will be contacted for an interview. These interviews will either be telephonic or face to face. The first round of interviews will take place September – December, and the 2nd round of interviews will take place January – February 2019. Candidates are advised to contact recruitment@localhost for more information.

I am turning 30 in 2019, can I still apply?
Yes. You must be 29 years of age or below when you apply for the programme (i.e. 2018). You may turn 30 while on the programme.

What do you mean by community leader?
A community leader is someone respected in your community or field of work. If you are studying, it may be a teacher or lecturer. It could be your pastor or imam. It might be your boss, or mentor. It could also be a municipal counsellor or leader in your area. It is less important what position the person is, and more important what they say about you! 

Can I attend only some parts the programme?
No. Joining the Activate programme requires that you commit to attending ALL the residential sessions, and that you complete the home tasks.

Can I post or fax my application?
No. You must complete the ONLINE application form. If you do not have internet access, you can reach out to an ACTIVATE! office or representative in your area to assist in the completion of the form. To find out who is in your area, check out our social media pages for information regarding recruitment roadshows or email recruitment@localhost or call us on 087 820 4873.

How long is training and when will I be expected to attend?
Module 1 and 2 are 8 days long, respectively. Participants are expected to arrive at the training venues on the Saturday and depart the following Saturday morning.

The dates for 2019 are as follows:

Module 1 intake 1: 2 – 9 March 2019
Module 1 intake 2: 30 March – 6 April 2019
Module 1 intake 3: 27 April – 4 May 2019
Module 1 intake 3: 4 – 11 May 2019 (KZN Only)
Module 1 intake 4: 25 May – 1 June 2019

Module 2 intake 1: 27 July – 3 August 2019
Module 2 intake 2: 24 – 31 August 2019
Module 2 intake 3: 21 – 28 September 2019
Module 2 intake 3: 28 September – 5 October 2019 (KZN only)
Module 2 intake 4: 19 – 26 October 2019
Module 2 intake 4: 26 October – 2 November 2019 (KZN only)

Where is training held?
We have training venues in Gauteng, Western Cape and KZN. Teams based here train throughout the year. We have 3 roving teams who travel to each province 1 – 2 times a year to offer the training programme.


Content Sharing

Participants are encouraged to share their own  initiatives, insights and experiences within the sessions.

198 Forms of Non-violent Action

The session is inspired  by the work of Gene  Sharp who in 1972 published The Methods of Non-violent Action commonly known  as 198 Methods of non-violent protest and persuasion. Participants identify issues and common concerns, examine how we normally look at and respond to them and then  re-conceptualise how they can apply non-violent  principles  in response to these issues or concerns into the own context.

As One Collective Leadership: Situational Leadership

The programme explores situational leadership through the As One Collective  Leadership model  developed by DeLoitte  Global Services. The As One approach explores how every situation calls for the right type of leadership and the right team for the task.  Participants are able to identity leadership situations and to reflect on the appropriate type of leadership responses and apply the learning to their own contexts. At the end of this session, participants will have a clear understanding that a single leadership style is not applicable  to every situation and that different situations require different responses and input from both the leaders and the team.

Government Handbook