On 7th October the Innovative Leadership Programme that ICON runs with ACCORD and Durban University of Technology ended for the year, with the presentation of Certificates of Achievement for those (40 in number) who attended the sessions, participated in the group projects and completed written assignments. Here are some of the successful graduates of the programme.
Most of the group who graduated, with members of staff who assisted with the Programme.
Various community projects are extending ICON’s ability to bring about positive nonviolent change, through the Innovative Leadership Programme. This Programme involves ICON and ACCORD (the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes); ICON undertakes the major organisation of the Programme. Each of the 40 students on the Programme joins a project in which servant leadership is developed.
Presentations by students on 16th September 2016 demonstrated the range and reach of the work undertaken.
Seven projects reported on their work. One of the projects represented involved Programme members spending a minimum of five hours weekly serving in the kitchen at the Denis Hurley Centre that serves the inner city. They brought in measures to improve the hygiene of the food preparation. Another served to increase the effectiveness of a Centre that cares for children and young adults as part of an HIV/AIDS project.
The approach taken by the Amnesty group was to reach other student groupings. Recently the group led a workshop on Gender and Leadership with 38 members of student clubs and societies at Durban University of Technology. Such outreach work is extending ICON’s ability to develop peace-based forms of leadership.
Another project dealt with issues of history, using museums as the entry point. For example, Karinda Jugmohan of this project presented how this work had developed her understanding of the role of women in the struggle against apartheid; her section of the presentation dealt with the resistance of women in Cato Manor.
The Student Counselling project presented information on DUT careers at different schools in the Durban area. Here Selisha Ramduth, Phumelele Gasa and Norman Ndisile present their report on the work done.
A seminar by Professor Aashish Kumar of Hofstra University, Long Island, NY, captured the attention of DUT students who are seeking ways of enabling communication across difference. Aashish demonstrated how the use of video, now available to large numbers of students through smart phones, can open up ways of having their voices heard.
The seminar was entitled Narrative empathy and youth media in negotiating identity and difference. Students who attended include members of the young men’s group, Amajita, and of the young women’s group, GASVA.
Representatives of DUT Radio were also present, and graduate students on the Peacebuilding Programme.
Several Masters and Doctoral students of the Peacebuilding Programme, part of the International Centre of Nonviolence, graduated in April 2016 at Durban University of Technology.
Of the six doctorates granted at the ceremony on 18th April 2016, Professor Geoff Harris of ICON had supervised five, and Dr Sylvia Kaye three.
The Peacebuilding Programme, the postgraduate programme linked to ICON, is a rapidly growing endeavour, with 37 Doctoral and 27 Masters students in early 2016. Given that ICON has only three full-time academic staff, this is a major achievement.
The conference Journeys to Peace, planned for 18th to 20th September 2015, has been postponed as a result of funding problems.
We apologise to those who had hoped to participate, and plan to hold the conference instead in July 2016.