UNITE is an after school extra-curricular programme. The aim of the club is to work with Grade 8, 9, 10, and 11 learners to develop and improve skills in leadership and community activism in order to foster attitudes and actions that reflect respect for all cultures within South African communities.
UNITE seeks to encourage learners to think critically about their contribution to their communities, and effective ways to enact change through a series of workshops focusing on issues of Identity, Integration, Cultural, Ethnic, Gender, and Religious Diversity, Human Rights, Leadership Skills and Active Citizenship. The club functions in four partner schools (Vista, Sea Point, Heideveld and Zonnebloem Nest High Schools) in the Western Cape area, and each school is represented by a group of Inner Club Council members (10 per school) who are responsible for recruiting members within their schools, as well as identifying and leading discussions on issues that affect their schools and communities.
What we do
These are weekly club meetings held at each school (Vista, Sea Point, Heideveld and Zonnebloem) to address pressing social and school issues as well as creative solutions to address them. UNITE facilitators incorporate understanding identity, integration, diversity, leadership, and facilitate effective activism workshops which are led by each school’s ICC. There are at least 20 club workshops per year.
Learners will identify one issue, within the theme of each term, that they want to address and will plan an event or campaign which will aim to reach an additional 200 learners. In term 1 they planned and presented Human Rights Day Celebration, for the second term of 2017 the campaign will discuss the topic of integration, with a media campaign surrounding World Refugee Day 2017. Learners will engage in planning, communication, and team work as they plan the event.
Educators are encouraged to participate in the discussion surrounding the issues. It is our aim to have the schools and its educators on board with the programme, with their participation in the club meetings and events.
Currently we reach:
- Our programme at Heideveld reaches on average 33 club members per week.
- Our programme at Zonnebloem reaches on average 28 club members per week.
- Our programme at Vista reaches on average 40 club members per week.
- Our programme at Sea Point reaches on average 39 club members per week.
Inner Club Council (I.C.C)
The Inner Club Council is made up of 10 members from each school, the ICC meets weekly at the Scalabrini Centre. They learn about the themes/topics they will be introducing to the club members in the weeks following their workshop, and give feedback and input into the programme and how it is creating awareness in their communities. The ICC has a leadership structure which is elected by the members. There are 5 positions – chairperson, vice chairperson, secretary, treasurer, and communications – with one assistant per position.
Skills training is an important component organized through the ICC, all club members from all schools are invited to participate in workshops and/or trainings that will add to their skills set.
We have students who have graduated from the UNITE programme come back as mentors. Some students access the Scalabrini Centre’s Employment Access Programme post Matric for help developing their CVs, the Woman’s Platform computer literacy programme, as well as work cross programme on our events or campaigns.