“Millennials don’t want to work”, they said; “Millennials are lazy”, they said; yet significant social and economic changes in Africa will be and are being effected by Africa’s youth who have seen the gaps and the inabilities of their governments to provide for the people’s basic needs. Congolese born and South African raised sisters Sophie and Louise Kanza started the Sophie A Kanza Foundation in order to help bring changes in the lives of orphaned and poor children around and outside South Africa. In a space of 2 years the foundation has done more than the government has done through fundraising initiatives like Fabulous Female Fashion Show that raised enough money to supply hundreds of girls with sanitary pads. #CandyCraftsDay as the Sophie A Kanza Foundation is sometimes known is interactive and engages the children in making crafts and supplying clothes and sanitary towels to the girls who have reached puberty. A huge number of charities and schools benefit immensely from the Sophie A Kanza Foundation through sanitary pads donations, clothes and food; and matric dance packages for girls who cannot afford all the expenses of a matric dance.
Being Congolese born and living in South Africa, the Kanza sisters have been deeply hurt by the Afrophobia attacks that started in Rosettenville when service delivery protests erupted against drug dealing and prostitution in the area. Although the culprits where known Nigerians; the community turned against all foreign nationals and the attacks caught on in even some parts of South Africa. This meant that the sisters were not safe even though South Africa is the only home they have known which led to them producing and directing a video titled “Singabantu” which means we are people. The video featured young immigrants from other African countries and their flights as “Foreigners” in South Africa. The video went on to win the “I Am Migrant” award at the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations Plural plus Festival.
It is sad that Africans do not feel safe in Africa because of the harm that we inflict on them as South Africans. The harm is not only physical but it is emotional as well, from isolation to name calling. Despite the challenges, the sisters have brought together young people from different parts of Africa to engage on matters that affect us all and bring forward solutions and ways to work together. A conversation has been started and young South African are against Afrophobia which means the older generation is the one that institutes these attacks by painting everyone with the same dirty brush. One foreign person’s sins are paid for by all the foreign people who live in SA and that is not right at all. If the young cannot change the mindsets of the old then we will need ways to protect our brothers and sisters from outside South Africa from these senseless attacks.
The good work of the foundation has not gone unnoticed, Sophie Kanza has been nominated as one of 100 Most Influential South Africans for 2017/18 and Louise Kanza was nominated for “Advocate of the Year” at the Africa Youth Awards 2017. We really need more young people like Sophie and Louise Kanza.
Check out the Singabantu video
Ruramai Musekiwa is a creative activist who’s passionate about art life and effecting positive social change through creative mediums and campaigns. She is a graphic designer by trade, writer, visual artist and aspirant muso. “Rudo” as she is affectionately known strives to find the balance between an extremely philanthropic business model and a focused profitable value proposition. “Sibahle”which means we are beautiful: is a campaign that was started by Rudo that is aimed at celebrating Africanism through the use of creative mediums and activations, an electric lifestyle brand with the African woman at the helm of its vision.
African Reign to me is us owing our space and purpose individually and collectively and building on a foundation of passion and awareness of our beauty as a people.
According to Rudo building the “African Dream” starts with recognizing our power, potential and beauty. Once we have a new frame of reference, one that speaks to power and positivity, that energy will flow into progressive endeavors. through the Sibahle initiative, book clubs have been started in major cities like Johannesburg, Cape Town and even spiraling into London. Rudo is doing a remarkable job by getting more African youth involved and showcasing their work on Sibahle Magazine. For us as the youth to help develop Africa, there should be campaigns that encourage active citizenry. Ruramai believes that there is hope for the youth and there is a generation of youth that are running with innovative concepts.
I think the media needs to stop perpetuating negative stereotypes and start highlighting the positive things that are happening on out continent. The subliminal impact of seeing negativity frequently is crippling.
Check out more on Sibahle and Ruramai’s work on www.sibahle.com
Daniel Bayda is the Founder and CEO of PAVIT-Karatu a non-profit organisation that aims to empower the youth through capacity building. Daniel is also an environmental conservationist. In 2011 he started planting fruit trees at different places in his district and he has planted over 200 fruit trees that range from mango to orange tree just to mention a few. All this is done under an umbrella community organisation called PAMOJA VIJANA TUNAWEZA which means together we can.
I feel so proud of my activities on environmental conservation having encouraged my community to develop a habit to love and conserve the environments. With time, I believe everyone will embrace this healthy attitude because now people understand the positive side of conserving the environment.
Daniel and his friends organize “Karatu Youth Awards” which aim to recognize and reward the epic accomplishments of the young people in Karatu. At only 25 years of age Daniel has his hands in a number of baskets. He is also an author and his novel titled “Faradhi” will be released before September this year.
On Africa Reign:
The African youth needs to come together in order for us to see Africa Reign. This is what Daniel believes and he says that we need to share ideas, challenges and success stories. He strongly believes that a young African with a great talent should have the chance to get his/her work to other Africans. Having such a platform will help to keep the young Africans motivated and to continue doing great things for our Africa
According to Daniel, the African youth is not motivated enough to help develop Africa as they are not well prepared to face the many challenges in our societies.
I mean, today the number of young people who are poor is rising than ever before. Look every where you will see.
To find out more on what Daniel does check https://pavitpamoja.wordpress.com/
AFRICA REIGN BRANDING BY https://www.facebook.com/BranditPro
Hailing from Windhoek, Namibia Cameron Kat is a youngster who is always pushing boundaries and as such started his own Marketing and Design company in 2014. His company focused predominantly in logo design, graphic design for print and brand activation. As a young African who is always thinking better and bigger, he started another company called Krazz International which also incorporated apparel, media and business to the already existing services offered.
I was born and bred here in Africa to me it is more than just my home but, a place that influences many of my choices. Not that the western education I received does not effect me, rather it helps me appreciate the raw wisdom passed, to us by generations of man who have come and gone.
First on the list of his beliefs, Cameron believes that as a people we have the ability to invent and become innovative and he hopes that we do so and we stop outsourcing our African resources.
To build on the African Dream, we need to understand it first. So what is it, this dream? the dream of developing Africa and industrializing it but allowing us to make a mark. That is my African Dream, How we as youth can help build on it? i strongly believe we need to educate our self.