Youth Leaders’ Summit

On Friday afternoon, 11 June, Union’s learner leaders were among 44 learners from Graaff-Reinet’s secondary schools who attended the town’s first-ever Youth Leaders’ Summit.

The event, which was held at the Profcon Resort, was a Prescient Foundation SCI project, organised by Mrs Hestie Clegg.

Through the course of the afternoon, Mr Igno van Niekerk, an acclaimed author and facilitator on leadership principles, introduced the learners to various qualities and challenges of leadership.

The process started with the learners having to trust their inner genius and learning 10 principles from the book, The power of Focus by Jack Canfield without taking notes but by using their bodies, stories, imagination, and other faculties.

Having learnt about the incredible power of holistic learning which all leaders need to develop; the learners were challenged to consider what difference they are able to make in their current reality. This was done by using FotoFunatix coaching picture cards designed by van Niekerk. Although social distancing was maintained, and Covid-19 protocols were adhered to, learners were able to connect and brainstorm with leaders from other schools.

After several brainstorming conversations, the learners were challenged to make their ideas practical and to consider simplification before application. Great leaders understand that keeping things simple is often a complex task. The process of simplification became a real challenge as learners attempted to complete a tricky 4-piece puzzle in less than 5 minutes. Once the learners understood the power of simplicity, they revisited their brainstorming ideas and challenges. The picture coaching cards were used once again, this time to address challenges, and learners discovered how powerful pictures are in stretching our thinking.

The session was concluded when learners were allowed to experience the importance of energy as illustrated by a UFO ball. Great leaders create energy through their vision, actions, and presence. After the session learners commented that they would like to become more involved in the community, contribute and make a difference.

The vision is that an annual seminar will be held for school leaders and that it will result in young leaders generating more ideas and making a positive impact in the community.

Union is very grateful towards the Prescient Foundation for this very valuable opportunity afforded to our young leaders.