On 7 October 2016, The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD), in partnership with the Durban University of Technology (DUT) and the International Centre of Nonviolence (ICON) hosted the awards ceremony for the 2016 Innovative Leadership Programme at the Kwamuhle Museum in Durban, South Africa. The awards ceremony marked an end to the 2016 programme by presenting certificates of the achievement to 40 students. The students are from different departments in DUT, the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s (UKZN) Edgewood Campus and outside. The certificates were awarded to all the students who completed the 2016 programme which included a portfolio of work that involved workshop participation, completion of a group community project and completion of a written academic assignment.
The programme which has been running for the last three years, responds to the need to react to the ever increasing challenges that young citizens encounter on a daily basis, on campus and elsewhere. National and international students alike find themselves facing diversity, differences and inequality as well as poor response to their immediate needs in the academic environment such as poor preparation at the school level for university admission; and the lack of student financial aid and accommodation. Failure to address and resolve some of these challenges has periodically led to the outbreak of violence on many campuses of South African universities. The morally corrosive effects of resorting to violent means to resolve differences are considerable. The programme was launched as a pilot project for implementation in 2014.
The main aim of the annual programme is to encourage and facilitate the development of leaders for a secure, just, equitable, humane and democratic world and to foster students’ roles in managing the challenges of the higher education system South African society as a whole. The programme offers a series of workshops that focus on issues of gender, interfaith, conflict management, dialogue, student services, the media and more. Students are also expected to work on an outreach project that provides them with an opportunity for the application of the approaches and views discussed during the course and submit a written academic assignment.
The students were awarded their certificates by the guest of honour, Ms Sibusiso Moyo who is the Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Engagement at DUT’s. She congratulated the students and also highlighted that as an institution they can see the difference which has been made by the programme in the calibre of student produced by the programme.
For more information on this event and other youth related activities, please contact Ms Sibusisiwe Nkosi, Programme Officer: Peacekeeping, at email@example.com.