• February 27th, 2020

NEW - YOUTH LEADERSHIP: Connect, engage, empower



The African Pathfinder Leaders Initiative (APLI) was launched in September 2018 as an institution that would provide transformative and empowering opportunities for young people to experience connectedness, empowerment and growth.  

APLI exists to build the bridge of opportunity, networks and resources which hinder young people from achieving their personal and professional goals and which hinder their meaningful contribution to their communities.  

APLI recognizes that young people know the solutions to the problems they face and our aspiration is to help the youth in contributing to solve some of the seemingly most intractable challenges faced by our society.

From a global perspective, the World Economic Forum deems that to remain competitive from 2020 and beyond, one should possess certain critical skills, which include complex problem solving, critical thinking, creativity, people management and emotional intelligence.  

The role of APLI in this is to use these global concepts to curate local training content for young Namibians, to indeed ensure that they are capacitated and competitive for the new era of work. APLI is a direct answer to this global call as we aim to invest and groom leadership through a platform that is designed for the youth and by the youth, and for Namibians by Namibians.
APLI has two active programmes it uses as vehicles for driving the above mentioned ethos forward, they are:

Connecting greatness
The APLI Fellowship is a yearlong personal development and idea incubator programme, which mainly (but not exclusively) targets youth between the ages of 18 – 25 who have the desire and potential to bring about significant change in their communities. The selected fellows are all actively working on a business or community development project, which addresses a social need. The fellowship comprises of three residential trainings where the fellows receive training on three main priority areas, which are leadership, community development and entrepreneurship, in addition to numerous simulations and group activities. This is our second year of implementation and the fellowship programme has gained immense traction from 101 applications in 2018 to 119 applications in 2019. The priority has been getting more fellows who reside outside the Khomas region, we have made great progress with this, whereas in 2019 we only had two fellows who reside outside the Khomas region, in 2020 we have five fellows. The innovativeness and diversity in businesses and projects have definitely also increased and reminded us of the capabilities of Namibian youth.

Engaging greatness
The APLI Foundation Programme provides tailored training to high school Learners Representative Council members (LRC) and junior town councillors. This programme stems from the rationale that these young people have been entrusted with enormous responsibilities of guiding, representing and making decisions at an early age.  

The Foundation Programme equips young leaders with leadership training, fundamental to their current leadership positions and beyond. This will enable them serve their peers effectively and prepare them to lead on larger platforms in the future.  

The principal applied here is thus to identify and groom leaders from an early age.  
In 2019, we had a successful pilot at Winnie Du Plessis Secondary School in Gobabis and in 2020, we are looking forward to scale this programme to other areas of the country.

Finally, it goes without say that the future belongs to those who prepare for it.  
While constantly readjusting our relevance, the picture set before us at APLI is that of grooming generations of empowered people - capacitated with all the needed skill-set and ability to run businesses, holding important leadership positions and being active change agents in their communities.  
APLI will continue to draw paths, out of the villages, forgotten towns, abandoned identities, broken dreams and frustrated set ups to the greater runway to a lift off to a greatly equipped Namibian youth.


Staff Reporter
2020-02-04 08:25:23 | 23 days ago

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