UCT students are slow to volunteer for things, which prompted the university's student leadership to host a week-long drive to foster a sense of social responsibility among their peers.
From workshops on social entrepreneurship and sports coaching sessions, to a concert featuring a community development arts groups, The Change Campaign, which ran from 22 to 26 August, showed students that no matter their interests, skills or talents, they can make a difference in their communities. As emphasised by Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, who delivered a talk, Fighting Apathy and Addressing Social Injustices in our Communities, as part of the campaign.
The Change Campaign is organised by the Students' Representative Council (SRC) and the Development Agency Sub-Council, which is made up of representatives from SHAWCO Health, SHAWCO Education, Ubunye, RAG, UCT Radio and Varsity Newspaper.
According to Kathleen Taylor, SRC vice-president internal, the drive is all about encouraging students to identify and take on social issues that concern them, thus bringing about change in their communities.
"We realised that something had to be done to try to address student apathy, and to evoke passion amongst students to not only care about their communities and the problems they face, but to actually do something about these problems," Taylor says.
While many students, through organisaitions and as individuals, are involved in social responsive work, apathy is still a "huge" problem among university students, Taylor noted.
Nyasha Kadandara, editor of Varsity Newspaper, added that many students either lack information about how they can get involved, or are wary to take on too much outside of their academic work.
She said The Change Campaign shows students that being involved in social responsive activities is part and parcel of a university student's educational experience.
"We also want to show that there a many ways one can get involved, even if it is just volunteering for an hour a week, picking up litter, playing soccer in the afternoon, or contributing to the newspaper."
Download the podcast of Archbishop Desmond Tutu's address to the students.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Please view the republishing articles page for more information.
On Sunday, 26 December 2021, the University of Cape Town learned of the passing of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, 90. We say goodbye to a man who taught us the power of joy to fight injustice and evil.
“Archbishop Emeritus Tutu, as he graciously aged, never lost his vision for a just and free South Africa.”
– Archbishop Emeritus Njongonkulu Ndungane
It took UCT seven years to award the second Chancellor's Award for Outstanding Leadership in Africa - a reminder not only of the prestige of the accolade, but also of how few and far between worthy recipients have been.12 Dec 2011
Caught up in the demands of their studies, students are often slow to volunteer for extra-curricula activities. To counter this, the university's student leadership hosted a week-long drive to foster a sense of social responsibility among their peers.05 Sep 2011
In his valedictory lecture at UCT's medical school on 13 February, Professor Solomon Benatar of the Department of Medicine in the Faculty of Health Sciences, stated that the health of whole populations - in South Africa and globally - is <i>the</i> major crisis and challenge for humanity in the 21st century.20 Feb 2008
With workmen in the background reminding guests of the newness of the hosting Wolfsohn Pavilion, the mood at the IIDMM headquarters was festive last Wednesday as Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu and his wife Leah arrived to open an HIV centre there named in Tutu's honour.09 Feb 2006