School of Built Environment & Development Studies

Activists Undergo Training through Centre for Civil Society

The Centre for Civil Society (CCS) within the School of Built Environment and Development Studies (BEDS) held a workshop for activists facilitated by CCS Community Scholar Ms Mzamo Zondi and Director at Sensys Training Ms Nina Sen.

The workshop examined social media organisations and post-1994 South African social movements, among other issues and subjects.

The CCS annual activist training is designed to equip activists with tools to improve their campaigns and elevate citizen/community voices. The training sessions are held in response to activist needs and include sessions on the rules and regulations around protest action, using social media to amplify campaigns, using Apps to organise an around activism and citizen voices such as Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed.

According to CCS director Dr Shauna Mottiar, the workshop also brings together activists in the Durban area to network and strategise around their campaigns and to build solidarity.

‘The CCS Community Scholars represent national civil society campaigns in South Africa such as the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) and the Right2Know and the CCS space allows them to consider their methodology and their daily challenges. The training is useful as it either builds on their work or provides the opportunity to consider or reconsider their approaches, methods and tactics,’ said Mottiar.

Activist and CCS Community Scholar Ms Philisiwe Mazibuko added: ‘I feel this workshop is necessary for community scholars because we interact with and represent various communities and knowing how to use language would assist in the work. The training is open to all activists interested and we hope, in the future, to bring in our members to hear and see first-hand the information available to make their struggles worthwhile.’

The next activist training takes place in 2020 and sessions will respond to the training and session formats identified by the 2019 participants and CCS Community Scholars.

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