Stop waiting for someone to come and save you! Start looking after yourself, taking responsibility, taking ownership, and creating the future you want to see – not only for you – but also for your community!
Cape Town, South Africa – Brand South Africa, the official marketing agency of the country, together with Play Your Part Ambassadors, comedy trio Goliath and Goliath, inspired hundreds of leaners from Ravensmead Secondary School earlier this week.
Over the past 10 months, Donovan, Jason and Nicholas Goliath, have been running a series of masterclasses with learners from around the country, to remind them of the role they can play as active citizens, and how to contribute to a brighter future for their communities, the country and a positive Nation Brand.
The masterclasses, aimed at grade 11 and 12 learners, seek to inspire innovation and entrepreneurship, with a spirit of engaging these future business minds at an early stage under the theme of “Play Your Part, turn your ideas into currency.”
The event included learners from the school joining the ambassadors on stage to share their daily struggles of living in disadvantaged areas, as well as one learner, who wept while she spoke about her challenges living with Parkinson’s disease.
“The Play Your Part initiative is aimed at lifting the spirit of our nation by inspiring South Africans to adopt a positive attitude and actively be involved in shaping this country,” says Sithembile Ntombela – Brand South Africa’s General Manager: Marketing.
“What the Goliaths have brought to this conversation is not only their dynamic business partnership, but their flair as entertainers and comedians who have a proven successful track record of channeling their creativity into currency.”
In addition to the comedic trio, fellow Play Your Part Ambassadors, renowned photographer, Imraan Christian, as well as social entrepreneur David Shields from “Going the Extra Mile” (GEM) also joined the Goliaths to share their stories at the school.
Continues Ntombela, “Not only do our ambassadors have a wealth of knowledge to impart to our learners, they also have an eagerness and willingness to share their stories.”
“What we have seen from the schools we have visited, and especially from the learners at Ravensmead this week, is a hunger and desire to learn from our mentors to make a difference in their communities and their country, either now as they get ready to leave school, or in the future,” concludes Ntombela.
There are many positive stories of South Africans who are playing their part and contributing to a brighter future for their communities, despite their disadvantaged up-bringing.
Just last year, a 29-year-old PhD student from the University of Western Cape, was named one of the world’s top young scientists, earning her a scholarship to study in the USA.
Shireen Mentor, the South African PhD student, grew near Manenberg in the Western Cape and witnessed how drugs drastically changed lives. Her research has been focused on understanding addiction, a disease that is rife among the residents of the Cape Flats. It was this that led to her receiving an incredible opportunity to head to the USA.
“My original research was situated squarely within the context of substance abuse. My neighbourhood, like many others in the greater Cape Town, experiences high levels of substance abuse, in particular methamphetamine – and this inspired me to look at the science behind it,”
“In my honours year I investigated the effects of methamphetamine on the blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability, since the mechanism may be linked to the integrity of the BBB, which regulates the movement of ions, pathogens, and an array of harmful substances across brain capillaries, protecting the cognitive integrity of the central nervous system.
“UWC has been my stepping stone in many respects. I’m looking forward to learning more about how my research may one day be able to make a meaningful contribution to treating addiction.”
At age 29, she is already a published scientist in prominent scientific journals, and she was the first recipient of the coveted national Wyndham Prize from the Physiology Society of Southern Africa in 2014.