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All posts for the month August, 2014

YOUNG & DYNAMIC!!!!

Published August 24, 2014 by TATENDA

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Last week l highlighted on how having hope and a strong passion can shape the path one chooses to follow. Today l will briefly discuss how beneficial and influential being YOUNG and DYNAMIC can be to one’s future goals.

Yesterday I had the privilege to attend and be part of life-changing discussions on the Young and Dynamic Virtual Fellowship. My sincere gratitude goes to the whole team who organized it and to the founder of course, Mrs. Tsitsi Masiyiwa (one of Africa’s most influential philanthropist). She is mother to more than 40 000 young (and I AM ONE OF THEM:):) people from across Africa (Burundi, Zimbabwe, Lesotho) whom she support financially for them to have access to education. She also runs workshops, Young and Dynamic Virtual Fellowship inclusive,that builds and encourage these young people’s physical and spiritual minds. They learn to be active citizens, to participate on global platforms and to fight for the betterment of their communities. Her organisation, Higherlife Foundation, has raised social entrepreneurs, doctors, activists, policy makers, teachers as well as other philanthropists.

That was just a brief highlight on the power, passion and love behind the Young and Dynamic virtual fellowship. The fellowship, which takes place every Saturday 5pm (GMT+1) on WebEx, is a life transforming and enabling tool for any person who wants to be a global change maker. Every week the program accommodates a panel which discusses global issues. From education to poverty, social entrepreneurship to economy, tribalism to gender equality, climate change and philanthropy. It is a moment where youths are given the platform to air out their views, concerns and solutions to existing global challenges. Apart from these discussions, there is also a privilege to hear the Word of God. There is a segment where we listen to Holy Spirit fed messages that we can apply to our day to day lives.

Yesterday there was a discussion on LEADERSHIP. A young man by the name Moses Machipisa highlighted on what makes up a good leader. He emphasized on the skills and characteristics that would define leadership which l could summarize in these few words VISION, COURAGE, PURPOSE, WILLINGNESS TO LEARN, INNOVATION and SACRIFISE. He advised us to learn and reflect on one of Strive Masiyiwa’s quotes

strive-masiyiwa From this message l realized that as young people, we have to arm ourselves with knowledge and design goals that will shape our future.

Mrs Masiyiwa also shared on what it means to be YOUNG and DYNAMIC. She emphasized on the importance of us using this tool (the Virtual Fellowship) to bring youths from across the globe for global collaboration. We are a young people with a purpose, who, if we are driven by love, can make tremendous changes in the existing chaotic world. By being “young and dynamic” we can construct frameworks that would better the lives of others.

To put it in one of the most famous and influential actors’ words, “all we need is to work hard, make connections and we will work with the right people for a rightful cause”    .10484996_10152521368531201_1564232623802394394_n

What an amazing hour I had yesterday…interacting with like minded people ##globalconnections##I invite you all to join this youth led iniative to create global solutions to global problems ##@YoungAndDynamic##Webex##leadership##success

 

The power of Hope and Passion

Published August 18, 2014 by TATENDA

 

What a memorable moment l had today. I met and interacted with three young and vibrant youths who are ready to bombard the world with their great entrepreneurial and community engaging ideas. As part of my research (for my Honours dissertation) which is mainly focusing on Youth Development, l have resorted to spending much of my  time interacting with as many youths as  possible.

Today l was just doing a one on one research to find out what are the youths passionate about. I wanted to observe and understand how many ideas and worthy strong passions lie in the young people of the world. So the three ladies (who are all Monash South Africa students), Yananiso Murimigwa (Zimbabwe), Lelethu Dlabantu(South Africa) and Tarryn Leigh Bowes (South Africa) shared quite some insightful thoughts with me. They all believe in the coming together of youth and the importance of domestication of International Laws that enhance Youth participation in regional, national and global socio-economic/political affairs. They are all planning to run projects that will better their communities.

 

 Yananiso is a Communications and Criminology and Criminal Justice student at Monash who wants to fight crime both in her home country Zimbabwe and South Africa. She plans on starting a project where she will be visiting prisons and rehabilitation centers to understand more about crime (what causes it and how can crime rates be minimized). What l loved most is that she is so passionate to make sure that as many youths are deterred from committing crime. She said she would be happy “if young people would be given platforms and enabling environments to focus on more productive and positive living styles”

 

One of the ladies, Tarryn, is a writer. She loves documenting stories of young people who are running projects to better communities. Her dream is to share stories of her peers to the international world. She told me that “although she still feels that she is still writing about almost anything, her dream is to write stories and articles on the young African people and market them to the whole world. She wants the youths to be heard, to be represented and to actively participate.” She is currently studying Journalism and Communications.

 

Lelethu is a strong and hard working 24 year old lady who has all her hopes for African development in the youths. Just like Yananiso, she is also studying Criminology and Criminal Justice as well as Communications. Just through talking with her, l saw the passion she has to improve the learning styles and communication skills of young people in her community. As a public speaker herself, she believes that by running public speaking, carreer guidance and life skills workshops in both primary and high schools, it will better the young  minds’ understanding of the world. Her dream is to adopt schoold and advance their communication, learning and debating skills so as to enable their enhanced participation on global platforms. She wants to see “an educated, able and self-confident youth who are not scared to communicate or stand up for their rights especially WOMEN, who have been segregated for far too long especially in the traditional African communities.”

 

The reason why l shared this is not because l just love writing or only interested in hearing people talk, but because l also have strong faith in the YOUTHS of the world. I believe in global collaboration and active participation of the world’s young population. I only interacted with three today…..HOW MANY MORE ARE OUT THERE WHO ARE LIKE-MINDED?? Let’s do this together. What we need is just HOPE and PASSION !!!!

Leading courageously

Published August 14, 2014 by TATENDA

Yesterday l talked about trust and purpose. Today l would want to share the words which were summarised by one of the 23 MERITERS l was with during the entire 2 week World Merit Fellowship Program in the UK Jessica L. Cruse. She shared the words of Paul Payne, very inspirational insights he shared with all of us in the House of the Lords (British Parliament). 

l thought they would inspire everyone who is going to read this post:):):)

“In the grandeur of the Houses of Lords in Parliament, the World Merit team was both treated an blown away with words that moved us all. He inspired the words of the seed and the tree and today I’m honoured to share his exact words on Courageous Leadership.

Being a Courageous leader

How would one define a courageous leader?

If we were to delve into our imagination one could imagine a courageous leader to be a tall well built chiseled jaw kina guy. With a big sword, fearless eyes and big scar across his face to prove that he was as hard as nails. #braveheartmeetsleonidis

I think back to my childhood and the stories my mum used to share with me. As I reflect on the topic of courageous leadership, my mind takes me back to a particular story of a young Sheppard boy called David.

David no more than 12 at the time was tasked with fighting a 20 foot Giant by the name of Goliath. As He prepared for battle I can only image the opinions of the witnesses that stood by not quite believing that David was the best suited for this mammoth task. He never matched the prerequisites, he was inadequate… This is not the courageous leader we imagined would save us.

As young leaders we too are face with the same opposition. In front of us there are Goliaths that look us in the eyes and seek to oppress the world which we are in love with. More so beside and around us we can hear the whispers of critics that don’t believe we can do anything about these issues.

As I reflect and mull over David’s story I quickly discover that David teaches us five crucial lessons that I believe courageous young leaders must possess;

1. You must have vision bigger than yourself; David realized that saving the lives of thousands was far more important than preserving his own life.
Courageous leaders need to have a vision so big that the mission no longer becomes about them.

2. You must possess skill and character to accompany you on your journey of leadership; David was an expert hunter, he spend hours cultivating his craft and building his character
Courageous leaders must be competent, they must have skill, they must possess character. “If you stand for nothing you will fall for anything.”

3. You must respect the gifts that are in your hands no matter how small. David had only a few stones and a sling shot but he saw it as enough.
Everybody has a gift no matter how small. Courageous leaders are able to recognize the big impact the little things can make.

4. You must empower others, so that they can be free and hold firmly to the vision also; David never went to meet Goliath without first sharing his dream with others.
Courageous leaders recognize that it takes an army to win a war not a single man.

5. You must be willing to sacrifice everything to see this vision come into fruition (even to the death.); David was willing to die so that his nation would be set free.

Courageous leaders are willing to lose everything in order to fight for the truth that they believe in.

I would define a courageous leader as one who refuses to be content with what they see around them and bold enough to fearlessly take that first step against the norm to see change happen.

The War Strategist Tao Tzu says “A journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step.”

Like David, are you willing to take the first step and carve out the path that will define your life?

And so you have to ask yourself three questions;
If not now, then when?
If not here, then where?
If not you, then who?

Many thanks
Paul Payne

TRUST AND PURPOSE!!!

Published August 13, 2014 by TATENDA

These two are concepts l have found to be the most influential in most of my endeavors. Throughout the 2 week program we had with the World Merit crew in the UK, I  have learnt to trust myself, my values and my colleagues (or those around me) so as to carry out actions that motivate my dreams.

I realized that purpose guides one to success. It enables one to plan, design and implement strategies that leads to success. I have observed that what made me realise that there was more to my student life than just studying and meeting new people when l started my undergraduate in 2011 was the strong sense of purpose. It was then that l felt l was mandated to act positive and bring changes to my community. Studying, socializing, community engagement, sports, IMPACT, CHANGE AND DEVELOPMENT all became part of my purpose. However, despite the enthusiasm and desire to facilitate global change, l had to foster trust and a strong belief in myself and my community that together we were going to march towards change. With the assistance of a combination of these two, l started seizing opportunities, forming groups, designing projects as well as joining youth global networks to encourage youth participation.

I must say I am where l am today (an AGENT OF CHANGE) because of my purpose, my desire to see youth being empowered and taking part in bringing solutions to worldwide problems. All the projects I have run so far were guided by my purpose and the trust l had built with my environment/ sphere of influence. The ability to work with others, to commit and to innovate are products of TRUST and PURPOSE. I remember the inspiring morning l had in  one of the youth leadership training sessions we attended in the House of the Lords (British Parliament). There was a gentleman called Paul who shared something interesting. His speech motivated and encouraged us to utilize and build upon these two utilizing VISION, SKILLS, WILLINGNESS, EMPOWERMENT and PERSISTENCE. As a social entrepreneur himself, who have been working closely with Lord Michael Hastings, his inspirational words are something that l am more than willing to share with as many youths out there as possible.

Again this month l started working on my Honours degree thesis which is basically centered on Youth Development. One of the most important message I got from my supervisors was that l had to pick a topic that not only interested me, but that which fulfilled my dreams and purpose. From the experience they have had, they noticed that a number of us youth get carried away by issues that seem fascinating but which has no ties with your dreams and desires. We tend to invest so much time and effort in things that ‘the world’ is doing not ‘what we want to do’. This had led to so many people creating and designing projects that never finish or that never solve any problem. We have to do that which we TRUST we can and perform those actions that align with our purpose. We actually should have a PURPOSE to achieve and attain the impossible. Let’s build trust amongst one another so that we work together towards development. I have learnt an important aspect in life which l would summarize “the more trust we have amongst ourselves, is the more joy and power we have towards building a strong sense of purpose. Trust and Purpose helps our society to eliminate bias, discrimination, gaps and classes.” We have the power to achieve more. We have to keep going!!!

Some interesting thoughts “OUR GENERATION” can utilise

Published August 8, 2014 by TATENDA

DSC_1209[1]So we were having a tour in London with my friends Namita Rajesh (INDIA) and Juliano Rzart (BRAZIL) and decided to visit the Victoria and Albert Museum in Kensington. We went there to just see the historical and ancient civilisations’ objects but l ended up learning quite interesting aspects that can help the youth of the 21st century solve global issues that is facing our world today. Quite insightful and interesting thoughts. THEY INSPIRED ME:):) 

Disobedient Objects

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We do not need to obey every structure and law in the world especially if they are structures that tend to undermine the masses. Africa did not become free from colonization by obeying. The Mandelas, Nkrumahs, Lumumbas and Nyereres did not free Africa by obeying existing laws. If a law is not allowing the ‘girl child’ to access education then it must be fought against. lf a law is not giving a capable woman her rightful job position, then it ought to be questioned. lf so many people do not know or understand what global warming is, then they have to be taught and enlightened. It’s high time we stop over-looking objects and start questioning. One of my favorite inspiring quotes was by a man called Socrates which says “the un-examined life is not worthy living for a human being”. It is high time we realise that the greatest good of a man is daily to converse about virtue, and all that concerning as well as examining oneself and others.

Direct Action

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l would like to urge every youth from every part of the world to TAKE ACTION!!! It’s time we stand up for girls who are denied education because of traditions and religion. We need to free them from child marriages. It’s high time we run campaigns to represent all the children suffering in Sudan, Syria, Gaza, Congo and various war-torn areas. At times it might seem that we don not have the power (as we are not the ones in authority) but my belief is that what use is authority when they cannot take any action!! The power to change the everyday prejudices and suffering lies within us. If everyone of us learn the art of challenging existing structures to ensure world peace and development, then the generations to come shall live in a stress-free environment.

A multitude of Struggles

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There is no “one way” nor is there a single person who is capable of solving global problems. lt is our duty to facilitate and ensure global collaboration towards action. l dream of a world where we are connected and willing to work together towards peace. As one of the global leaders, Nelson Mandela, once said “our struggles only become worthy when we work together and there is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” There is no other better time for us to network, learn from each other, borrow ideas and craft solutions than today. THE HOUR IS NOW!!!

Solidarity

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Again l will keep on preaching for the spirit of “togetherness” As the young generation, we have to learn to appreciate one another. We have to stop racism and gender stereotypes and focus on fighting for a worthy cause. Imagine if 50 of us could run a ‘clean up campaign’ in a town to ensure a clean environment. Have you ever thought of how much an impact could we make if a 100 youths volunteer to teach (tutor) those children  in marginalised communities who cannot access education.How awesome would it be if we all learn the art of social entrepreneurship to better our economies and living standards. I DO BELIEVE IN US…..LET’S WORK TOGETHER.

Making Worlds

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As we make our ‘new world’ we ought not forget where we came from. All that we can achieve today is a product of our past. Let’s make use of our past to give birth to new structures. looking back enable us to envision a new better world, a world that does not repeat the same mistakes.

I believe this is going to inspire us all as we walk towards achieving the greatest ambitions. Together, we are going to impact the world!!!