I am a midwife for ideas - SA woman chosen for global summit

2016-09-02 16:01
Bongeka Dlamini has been selected to attend the One Young World Summit. (Supplied)

Bongeka Dlamini has been selected to attend the One Young World Summit. (Supplied)

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Durban - A young South African woman is being given a chance to bring global attention to the problems facing the country after she was selected to participate in the One Young World Summit in Ottawa, Canada, in September.

However, 22-year-old Bongeka Dlamini, from Umlazi, Durban, does not have enough money for the trip to attend the summit, set to take place from September 28 to October 1.

Dlamini told News24 that seeking out sponsorships for individuals is difficult. She needs around R70 000.  

“I have tried with many different organisations and companies, but many of them say they sponsor groups of people, rather than just one person. It is an exciting opportunity for me to showcase our country and some of our challenges. I am hoping for any kind of assistance no matter how big or small it might be.”

Dlamini is one of the 1 300 delegates from around the world set to attend the summit that has hosted speakers including former UN secretary general Kofi Annan, former US president Bill Clinton, and entrepreneur Richard Branson.

The summit will gather the brightest young people from around the world and empower them to create positive change. They will discuss problems facing their countries and come up with solutions.

“Unlike any other event, the summit gives young people the kind of media platform and forum ordinarily afforded only to the leaders of nations and corporations,” Dlamini told News24.

“The conference is very practical. We don’t just talk. We take what we learn from that summit and bring it back to our country.”

A passion for NGO work

Dlamini said her journey to charitable organisations began when she attended the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN).

After joining AIESAC in college, an international non-profit that helps students get internships overseas, she realised a similar organisation could benefit UKZN and its students.

“AIESAC wasn’t at UKZN and I felt like it would be a great organisation to have at our university. We were able to bring the organisation here and have helped people.”

Dlamini is currently involved with three other NGOs.

“Things are pretty hectic. But I am always the person people call when they have ideas, especially with NGOs. Sometimes I feel like I am a midwife for ideas.”

Her experience with various NGOs gave her the drive to solve problems on an international level.

“Sometimes, as much as we want to solve local issues, we need to take a global mind-set and broaden how we approach challenges.”

Women empowerment

Dlamini said if she got the money to attend the summit, she would advocate women’s empowerment.

“If I raise funds to attend, I will express my passion of for the empowerment of female leaders in the government and country. My aim is to take whatever I learn and ensure black Africans are in leadership.

“I am very passionate about our country and I think it is important to understand the perspective of different solutions that could arise from a summit of this nature.”

Dlamini can be contacted on 076 051 9112 or 074 787 7084 or send an email to bongekadlaminisa@gmail.com

Read more on:    durban  |  women empowerment

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