Youth leadership academies

HEARTLINES has a vision that every young south African will grow up in an environment where  they are both loved and valued. With this foundation, order young people can themselves adopt and practice the good values that are so necessary for us to change South Africa.

Research tells us that young people who have been loved and supported can become adults who contribute positively to our nation even though they may come from very challenging circumstances. And let’s face it…we know that many South African young people are facing tough circumstances. This may be attributed to socio-economic issues like poverty, the prevalence of single-parent households where often no father is present, high levels of violence and crime in many of our communities, and the illness or death of caregivers due to HIV/AIDS. Many young people grow up feeling like they have nobody to talk to…nobody with whom they can really be themselves.

Youth mentors

At HEARTLINES, we want to help change the status quo. We are calling on ordinary South Africans to commit to walking a road with a young person already in your sphere of influence. You as a caring adult can be the one who listens to them, who encourages them, who gives them an example to follow. The chances are there is already a young person who is looking at you; it might be a kid in your church, a neighbour’s child, perhaps even a member of your own extended family.

We are looking for everyday heroes, and think we may have found one in you. But we know the task is daunting, so we want to support you. On 26 October 2008 Heartlines launched the Mentorship Starter Pack. This is a resource for ordinary South Africans with courage enough to invite a young person to follow their example. We’ll provide you with a guide to mentoring, plus a DVD that will show you what you need to know, and will encourage you to examine who you need to be before inviting a young person to follow your example. We will further assist you with a support line whereby you can phone, sms or email us with your challenges or queries. Because we know that an investment in a young person is an investment in our future.

Heartlines Columba 1400 Leadership Academies

The Columba 1400 SA Leadership Academy is an intensive, experiential leadership process designed to elicit each participant’s capacity to lead. The process takes place over 6 days (involving 10 learners and 3 educators including the school principle), with each day focussing on a different value. The values we are promoting are awareness, focus, creativity, integrity, perseverance and service. Each activity is carefully crafted to allow participants to experience and internalise each value, giving them a personal experience that they’ll take forward.

This experience is differentiated from other leadership development programmes by the following elements:

  • Elicitation model: The task of leadership is not to put greatness into humanity, but to elicit it, for the greatness is already there. (John Buchan)
  • Values-based approach to leadership
  • Pedagogy of place: The history and geography of the place in which the academy is held provides the background from which multiple leadership narratives are woven.

The Columba model has been highly successful in positively changing dysfunctional schools and leading to positive social change in poor communities.