Newsroom » Media Releases

Article Details

Bringing Active Ctizenship Into Schools, 23 July 2015

The Department of Basic Education in an effort to promote active citizenry, has partnered with Empowervate in a Programme that builds on learners agency and critical learning skills to bring about positive change in their schools and communities. The Programme involves learners working as a team and within the parameters of the constitution to address a particular social challenge identified by the school.

This year included primary school teams for the first time. Hence the efforts of approximately 4520 grade 10 and grade 7 learners from and all nine provinces will present their projects to improve their schools, their communities and their nation at the Youth Citizens Actions Programme (YCAP) National Championships on Saturday (25 July 2015) in Parys, Free State.


During Youth Month and Mandela Month, Provincial Showcase events took place throughout the country, starting in Eastern Cape and ending in Gauteng. The showcase and training Programme has assisted with the improvement of the quality of the projects which has improved over the past six years. The participation of new and returning schools is commendable in this year's YCAP Programme


Topics ranged from social to academic and environmental issues and the participants found creative and innovative solutions to address them. The YCAP Programme provides learners with skills and confidence to make positive changes in their schools and communities instead of feeling hopeless and powerless. The awards element acts an incentive and it serves to acknowledge the hard work all participants have put into their projects. The key elements that the adjudicators look for in a winning project are innovation, impact and sustainability of the project.


“YCAP is an annual programme through which learners from primary and high schools across the country create projects aimed at addressing issues which they have identified in their schools and communities. These issues range from poor academic performance to drug abuse, teen pregnancy and road safety campaigns,” explains Amanda Blankfield-Koseff, Founder and CEO of Empowervate, the NPO, which powers the YCAP programme.


The National Championships weekend will combine giving youth a platform to share their active citizenship projects – to help other schools to improve on similar issues they all face, as well as an opportunity for personal development and social cohesion.


The panel of judges includes Justice Edwin Cameron from the Constitutional Court who will give an address and be one of the adjudicators of the Secondary school category. We also have five other judges who are esteemed in their own right.


We have Melinda Ferguson giving a talk on the Sunday about her descent into drug hell in 1999 and how she used her inner resources to conquer her addiction and found her way into recovery and now leading a successful and healthy life. Following the talk there is a team building adventure activity for the group of 81 learners.


Empowervate Trust was established in 2013 to run YCAP, which was founded in 2009. Deutsche Bank South Africa Foundation is YCAP’s founding sponsor, since inception in 2009. In 2014 UTi SA Mounties Division came on board as a sponsor.


The Department of Basic Education is the strategic and implementation partner since 2009, along with other non-profit organisations, partner NPO Heartlines and new partner International Youth Council of South Africa. UNISA is the pro bono research partner.



For more information:

Y-CAP:             Amanda Blankfield-Koseff:        079 080 8474

DBE:                Morongwa Thobakgale:             073 755 4851






You must be a registered subscriber in order to view this Article.
To learn more about becoming a subscriber, please visit our Subscription Services page.

Written By: Administrator Account
Date Posted: 1/11/2016
Number of Views: 1071

An error has occurred. Error: Unable to load the Article Details page.
Copyright: Department of Basic Education 2021 Terms Of Use Privacy Statement