Above: Delegates at the DDP Civic Education Conference hosted at Elangeni Hotel in Durban.
On 21 October, DDP hosted the Civic Education Conference with the theme: “Towards a national understanding of civic education”. The purpose of the conference was to identify the role of civic education in the development and consolidation of shared democratic values and institutions.
The event had four primary objectives:
Exploring the possibility of developing a common national understanding of civic education in a pandemic;
Identifying the existing civic education delivery methods, synergy among them and evaluating whether these remain appropriate during a pandemic;
Exploring mechanisms to measure the impact of civic education and;
Strengthening partnerships with stakeholders in the civic education network.
DDP was honored to have representatives from Youth Capital and the Youth Lab speak to our audience with the objective of fulfilling the primary objectives of the event. Kristal Duncan-Williams, Project Leader at Youth Capital, gave us insight into the role of youth advocacy as a means of civic education. Here we learned that social media has been a crucial tool that helps young people to stay in touch with current events. Social media is also a tool that is very important to find people who share similar and different views on issues. Furthermore, it helps youth find organizations that stand for issues that matter to them. It was also important to note that even though young people engage on social media to share their views, policies bring more tangible solutions. Efforts need to be made by the state to make the policy-making process for youth more accessible.
In addition to the contributions from Youth Capital, we had Dimpho Lekgeu, Community Manager from Youth Lab. From Ms. Lekgeu, our audience learned about the impact COVID-19 had on civic education initiatives. For Youth Lab, some of the challenges that have occurred as a result of COVID-19 or underlying issues included the inability to collect data because of lockdowns, overcoming language barriers, and even load shedding. However, the positive about all of this has been the opportunity for Co-Creation, Accessibility, and Collaboration.
Special mention goes to Fanele Masinga, CE 2020 Compendium Contributor, for giving us insight into digitalization and its effect on inequality. Our ever-growing technologically advanced world has brought its benefits, but also has exposed inequalities. The advancements of technology face the challenge of being non-inclusive for all. We need to work on having digitalization benefit all, and not just a few.
DDP appreciates the riveting conversations from our speakers and the incredible engagement of our partners. Indeed:
“Education is the most powerful tool you can use to change the world!” – Nelson Mandela
Above: Back- Dr. Paul Kariuki, DDP, Prof Mngomezulu,
UWC, Malcom Canham, eThekwini Municipality, Andile
Mafa, Ranyaka, Patric Martel, UKZN, and Dr. Isaac
Front: Merusha Vather, Auditor General of SA,
Sphamandla Mhlongo, DDP, and Thabisile Miya, DDP at
LG Conference 2022.