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FORMER provincial and national winners of the yearly Young Communicator Awards are being given valuable leadership training as regional coordinators of the programme.
Asanda Shabangu, Sibusiso Khoza, Bonolo Cebe, Marine Opperman, Tumelo Sibanda and Palesa Mosia have been roped in as workshop coordinators to help prepare for the provincial finals.
They are among a growing number of the programme's top achievers. They have also served as timekeepers, adjudicators, programme directors and mentors.
They are mentored by the academic development service providers Model United Nations South Africa. It is led by Abdullah Verachia and Nwabisa Mayema and features coaching and mentoring expertise of university students across South Africa, including Henry Jordaan, Kabwela Chisaka, Botebele Moshodi, Nabeela Kazee, Juliette Morrow and Lisa Brown.
Most of the 70 workshops have already taken place in Gauteng, Limpopo, Free State, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, Northern Cape and North West. Fourteen more are due to be held during March and April in North West, Eastern Cape, Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Northern Cape.
Participants are taught how to prepare speeches, to choose and research topics and titles , write good introductions and conclusions, conquer stage jitters and to deliver effective speeches with clarity, expression, emphasis, attention and interest.
The awards help pupils in grades 11 and 12 for whom English is not a mother tongue to:
l Improve presentation and oral communication skills;
l Develop leadership and personal growth;
l Improve written and oral English communication as English is the accepted language of business and academia;
l Encourage a pioneering spirit among participants;
l Embrace the concept of nation building, which seeks to empower people to take control of their lives and make a meaningful contribution to their communities;
l Encourage them to address key issues facing their communities and the country and to find solutions to these challenges;
l Prepare participants for the working environment; and
l Nurture assertiveness and confidence to help them develop into good future leaders.
The provincial finals will be held in KwaZulu-Natal on May 8, in Limpopo on May 15, in North West on May 22, in Free State on May 29, in Gauteng on June 5, in Northern Cape on June 5, in Mpumalanga on July 17, in Eastern Cape on July 24, and in Western Cape on July 31. The finals feature prepared speeches and a parliament, legislature or UN General Assembly-type panel discussion or debates.
The national finals will take place on August 20.