“The time will come when our nation will honour the memory of all the sons, the daughters, the mothers, the fathers, the youth and the children who, by their thoughts and deeds, gave us the right to assert with pride that we are South Africans, that we are Africans, and that we are citizens of the world.”
‘’Young people are capable, when aroused, of bringing down the towers of oppression and raising the banners of freedom.”
These are some of the famous Nelson Mandela quotes that 2011 Gauteng Activator Frans Ntsoereng repeated 10 times after being announced as one of the few South Africans who will represent South Africa at the global Social Entrepreneur training platform in July this year.
The sponsor, Startup Safari is a Global immersion programme that connects startups and entrepreneurs in emerging markets to the fastest growing startup eco-systems around the world. Their mission is to foster cross-border mentorship, collaborations and investment.
Activator Frans Ntsoereng won the Startup Safari prize for his Citizen Link social enterprise. The project aims to minimize ongoing fatal violent action during service delivery protest. The optimistic, self-proclaimed leader of citizens of the world believes that his Citizen Link project brings a reliable remedy that will among others, introduce and implement innovative ways of non-violent protests.
“South Africas violent colonialism and apartheid past might be gone but its destruction and inculcalted legacy of anger is very much alive. We as South Africans have normalised violent actions during protests as the only mechanism of getting attention from powers that be. The unfortunate part is that community development programmes (that are primarily intended for the poor) get delayed or in other cases vulnerable innocent lives (more especially women and children) are destroyed or lost. It is these reasons that informed my social enterprise Citizen Link. Through the launch it will be creatively introduced throughout the country,’’ said Ntsoereng.
In July, the Gauteng Activator will join the world’s best social entrepreneurs who will be part of the10 day Startup Safari social entrepreneurship training in India. Among other critical things, the intensive training programme will cover various startup topics like, entrepreneurship fundamentals, customer behaviour, market research, funding, bootstrapping, marketing, financial management, business operations etc.
Good ambassadorship plans
Besides absorbing all the information and forming lifelong global future strategic partners for his project, the delighted social change driver is also intending to use his participation as a springboard for future opportunities for other Activators.
“I hope my entrepreneurship trip will help me create bigger global contacts with other social entrepreneurs, broaden my entrepreneurial acumen and most importantly create an eternal great reputation of ACTIVATE! Leadership outside of South Africa’s boarders,” he said.
The flamboyant Ntsoereng attributes this latest achievement to his fellow Activators, members of his organisation and according to him, ‘”his lifetime role models that conceptualised and implemented the ACTIVATE! Leadership Network.
“Too many people might be seen as Frans’ little milestone but I would argue differently. To me, this is just one small reflection of the amazing generous work that ACTIVATE! and people like Dr. David Harrison, Chris Meintjes, Carrie Leaver, Mhlanganisi, Erika, Landy, Pam, Shireen Jugss, M.D Masangane and Paul Masedi have over the years invested in what I am and have achieved. This is just one testament that what they worked hard to achieve is indeed working and worth all the sweat, blood and tears. Therefore much more credited must be given to them,” he said.
Ntsoereng, the life coaching skills trainer and community development practitioner isn’t a stranger to working with major global game changers. He has previously worked with international organisations like One Young World, Educo Africa, International Citizen Service (ICS) and Latitude Global Volunteering just to mention few.