What happens when you take a couple of 20-year-olds in their second year of university to Hermanus and ask them to talk about two things: significance and community? You get a mixed bag of cold showers, constructive conflict, creative collaboration, moments of clarity about oneself and a deeper appreciation of and desire to impact community.
Between the 1st and 3rd of April 2016, groggy Year Equip Candidate Fellows travelled to the Habonim Campsite. Aside from the excitement that travelling usually brings, there was also the anticipation of seeing the entire Year Equip group (from all over South Africa) again – after almost a year. In the words of Pfano Nevhutalu, a Year Equip, “It was refreshing … I felt more connected and integrated into the Foundation community.”
A key focus during this Camp Connect would be discussing, understanding and learning to life one of the Foundation’s Five Pillars, the Spirit of Significance. We would learn how crucial connecting would be to future socially impactful entrepreneurs. That is, connecting with ourselves, our fellow Candidate Fellows and the greater community, both within the Foundation and the greater society.
And thus we embarked on a three-day ideation and relationship building experience. We developed a camp programme for the Grade 8 and 9 Scholars that would ease their transition from primary school to high school and inspire them to eventually become Candidate Fellows as well – all in a day’s work! After a rather fun and successful interaction with the Scholars, we had to put our thinking caps back on for the next objective – working on our Legacy Project. After hours of working, putting egos aside and midnight reconfigurations of the democratic institution of voting, we finally agreed on and pitched the Legacy Project we would undertake in the next year.
With any collaborative effort comes the temptation of forgetting that one is dealing with fellow human beings. It was quite appropriate then that one of our last sessions was dedicated to sharing our defining moments – the stories of moments that turned our lives around. It granted us the opportunity to connect on a more empathetic level and realise that we are all deserving of greatness.
Despite or perhaps because of the constructive conflicts, late nights and freezing morning showers by the sea, we gained a better understanding of what the Spirit of Significance encompasses: getting to know yourself in your entirety and how you can use yourself to empower others.
by Foyin Ogunrombi & Olerato Mogomotsi