23 September 2020- The Youth Empowerment and Transformation Trust (YETT) partnered with Africa University to host its annual Youth Leadership Development Course at the University’s main campus in Mutare, Zimbabwe. Each year, YETT engages the expertise and vast experience of Africa University’s faculty and top management to train young leaders in Zimbabwe who are actively engaged in advocacy and youth empowerment. The participants were drawn from across the country and are leaders in various sectors of civic society advocating in the fields of HIV/AIDS interventions, youth in business enterprise, mental and physical disability awareness and gender based violence prevention.
Hosted by the university’s Institute of Peace, Leadership and Governance , the high impact programme is designed to expose youth to best practices and strategies in effective leadership that transforms the lives of those the youth leaders are meant to serve, emboldening them to become active players in driving meaningful development on the continent. With topical issues such as youth advocacy and societal participation, leadership ethics, entrepreneurship, emotional intelligence and gender forming the core areas of the three day workshop, the intention of the programme is to enhance the capability and effectiveness of youth leadership in Zimbabwe and Africa.
Opening the workshop with words of encouragement and life lessons derived from his personal experience and leadership journey, Vice Chancellor Professor Munashe Furusa emphasized that leadership is a divine calling into which those called to serve should grow. He went on to say that the future of any society lies with the active and meaningful participation of the youth. Speaking to the impact of the programme, he said, ” The course you are about to engage in will challenge you to make bold steps that shall amplify your voices into the future.”
Drawing inspiration from the sage words of Malcolm X in his 1964 address to Mississippi youth that still resonates and captures the spirit of urgency for increased youth participation in the building of societies, Prof Furusa urged the participants to use their minds and learn to think independently. He went on to say, ” As Africa University, we have embraced and fulfilled our mandate of training ethically grounded leaders. We are ready to direct the transition from knowledge acquisition to knowledge generation, creating leaders who are responsive to the needs of the continent. This is the generation that holds Africa and will take us where we need to go and where we need to be. You must cease to be consumers and become creators , moving from a job seeking mentality towards one of innovation and embracing new opportunities. Become actors in the global economy on your own terms. I urge you to use this opportunity as a springboard that will enable you to transform your dreams into reality.”
Expert facilitators have been drawn from across the university with presentations lined up from leadership and governance heavyweights CBPLG Dean Professor Pamela Machakanja, Assistant Dean Mr. Thomas Masese and Registrar Mr. Herbert Njonga. AU Technology pundit Dr. Yogesh Awashti alongside senior CBPLG instructors and AU communications specialists will add to the rich mix of trainings that shall be availed to participants in the course of the programme.
YETT is a youth networking organization committed to the full participation of young people in sustainable development through advocacy and capacity building of youth and youth organizations in Zimbabwe. YETT exists primarily to serve the youth and youth organizations and to ensure that the youth are involved in all aspects of development .