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The Local Organizing Committee for the Talloires Network Leaders Conference is eager to welcome more than 250 participants to South Africa and show them some of the best civic engagement programs that Cape Town area universities have to offer. For this reason, the committee has put together a series of site visits to take place on December 4th, 2014, the last day of the conference.

The site visits will allow conference participants to choose one of 14 projects to visit. These projects are part of engagement programs at Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Stellenbosch University, University of Cape Town, and University of the Western Cape. The programs incorporate a wide array of topics including business incubation, social inequality, substance abuse relief, community fitness, sustainable housing, and food security. Below is a list with a brief synopsis of each project. For a complete list including contact information for each project, click here.

  1. Vrygrond Community Lab (University of Cape Town): The community lab is a successful working an learning facility where participants learn to deliver presentations, write applications, search for jobs, and use different computer programs.
  2. Safety and Violence Initiative (SaVI) and Amandla edufootball (University of Cape Town): This collaboration brings together an organization aiming to tackle social inequality through the fusion of education and football (Amandla), with a research partner committed to community-based work (SaVI). The partnership focuses on helping disadvantaged young people with the power and appeal of football / soccer.
  3. Raymond Ackerman Academy (University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business): A partner of the Youth Economic Participation Initiative, RAA focuses on offering disadvantaged youth who are unenrolled in higher education the opportunity to develop themselves and the communities around them through an education in entrepreneurship.
  4. Gleemor Baptist Advice Office (University of the Western Cape): Launched in 2013, the Advice Office provides assistance to community members experiencing problems due to substance abuse. Participants are eligible for social development grants.
  5. Delft Fitness (University of the Western Cape): Established ten years ago, this project focuses on the wellbeing of the community. It is run mostly by women, and provides help with participant’s lifestyle and fitness habits.
  6. Lwandle Migrant Labor Museum (University of the Western Cape): This museum commemorates the struggles of Apartheid in South Africa. It highlights the trials, tribulations, and triumphs of migrant workers in the area. It focuses on the infamous pass book, the identity document that controlled the lives of black South Africans.
  7. Sustainable Housing Project (Cape Peninsula University of Technology): This project promotes the use of cheaper and energy-efficient building materials and methods for communities. Participants will get a chance to visit a model house that represents the type of sustainable housing that the project designs.
  8. Upcycling project focused on people with disabilities (Cape Peninsula University of Technology): This project aims to reduce carbon footprint and land pollution, creating environmental awareness through integrated environmentally-friendly management models. People with disabilities are encouraged to develop waste into commercially viable products to generate income.
  9. Sustainable Livelihoods food security project (Cape Peninsula University of Technology): Through aquaponics, fish processing, and food gardening, this project contributes to food security and the development of green jobs in the community. Participants will visit the departments involved, and the AgriFood Technology Station.
  10. Ukwanda Rural Clinical School (Stellenbosch University): The RCS facilitates training opportunities for health professionals and health care workers, by inviting them to live in a rural community for a year. This innovative model is a sustainable rural development project sponsored by Stellenbosch’s Faculty of Medicine and Health Science. Visitors will have the opportunity to visit the rural campus, and a community project where students provide health and rehabilitation services to local residents.
  11. Stellenbosch University Centre for Pedagogy (SUNCEP): The Centre offers activities divided in three areas: teacher professional learning, school-based interventions, and university preparation programs. Working to increase access to higher education, the project works with students from grade 7 to after graduation.
  12. iShack (Stellenbosch University): This project delivers off-grid solar electricity services to an informal settlement in Stellenbosch using a delivery model that seeks to maximize sustainability and resilience.
  13. Sustainability Institute (Stellenbosch University): The SI is an international living and learning centre for studies and experience in ecology, community and spirit. Located within a mixed income ecovillage, the SI focuses on learning for sustainable futures. Participants will experience a tour of the SI and Lynedoch EcoVillage.
  14. LaunchLab (Stellenbosch University): The LaunchLab is a mixed-use business incubator that supports mainly technology and innovation businesses. The vision for these programs is to develop a thriving community which accelerates entrepreneurs and businesses to a new level.