2018 saw the passing on of many liberation struggle stalwarts and veterans, resulting in the loss of centuries’ worth of experience and memories. In devising the new projects for the Foundation to undertake in 2019 and beyond, it was decided that special emphasis needed to be placed on passing lessons learnt from- and values espoused by Oliver Tambo on to the next generation of South Africans. In order to bring this to pass, the Foundation conceptualised a youth conference which took place at Birchwood Hotel’s O.R. Tambo Conference Centre on the 24th of July 2019.
The conference, titled Passing the Baton Youth Conference, brought together 265 young people between 16 and 25 from 8 Gauteng-based schools. Under the theme Leaders of Today Passing the Baton onto Leaders of Tomorrow, the learners listened to- and engaged with 5 panel discussions which were anchored on various Tambo values. It was critical that the pupils in attendance represented diversity in terms of their economic, racial and social backgrounds, to ensure that the Tambo values were passed on to an audience that was representative of South Africa’s demographics.
Speakers included: Justice Edwin Cameron, Dr Brigalia Bam, Justice Albie Sachs, Ms Louisa Mojela, Amb Lindiwe Mabuza and Mr Sipho Maseko, to name a few. The Tambo values on which the panels were anchored were: Ethical Leadership, with the topic Has Tambo’s vision been realised? Politics and ethical leadership in today’s South Africa; Humility – Arts and Culture as a mechanism for consolidating and vitalising democracy; Unity – discussing Land Reform and Constitutionalism; Accountability, which tackled Women and Investment: Ensuring the inclusion of young women in finance; and Integrity – the 4th Industrial Revolution is here. Now what? Youth as drivers of 4IR.
The attendees engaged enthusiastically with the various panellists, asking questions and voicing their concerns and recommendations on the South Africa they’d like to live in.
The second Passing the Baton conference will be held on 22 July 2020. If you would like to partner with us on this project, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.