Just and resilient communities where youth engage with their full potential.
We nurture connection between youth and existing resources within the community.
What we do
We seek to create interpersonal spaces of learning that recognize the multiple forms of wisdom we all have to share with one another. Seeking to create more just futures, we focus on youth to equip young citizens with strong values and leadership competence. We believe in a world where youth are supported by a whole community, tapping into existing networks and opportunities that can lead to income generation, skills sharing, and increased well-being. Our programs enable interpersonal exchange among people in order to collectively find sustainable solutions to social and environmental problems, through:
- Training programs and workshops focusing on constructive communication as well as on personal, participatory, and people-led development
- Business skills development and youth entrepreneurship
- Networking, collective learning, and community connection
She has over 15 years experience in the communications industry where she used her powerful visual storytelling skills to distil complex information into compelling content to make it accessible to much wider audiences. She believes that in order to overcome many of the barriers that are stacked against the majority, we need to remember old ways and create new ways that allow for each other to be authentically seen and heard, and this is what drives her passion in the communications field.
She grew up in Germany and somehow got stuck with the beautiful souls in South Africa. Over the past 4 years, she has been collaborating with Theresa in the field of sustainable education and youth empowerment and has become an important driver of the strategic developments behind Amava Oluntu. Her background lies in organizational development and fundraising.
Through the Pollinating Pride in People programme Raelene came into contact with Amava Oluntu at the beginning of 2022 and the relationship has grown from strength to strength.
Raelene is the Brewmaster of Boost, a boegoe and fynbos honey spring water infusion. She also does freelance admin work at SEED in Mitchells Plain where she was a permaculture facilitator for 2021. She is also a founding member of the Vrygrond Garden Project, where a productive garden and community safe space is being cultivated. She believes that individuals can heal themselves through plants and music. Her personal project, Inter-species Music is at the intersection of what gives her joy: nature and art.
Board of Directors
We are in the process of growing our board. We wish to do this in a way that does not just conform to traditional structures, but rather takes what is valuable from these and blends them with flexibility and an openness to new ways of forming structures that make sense to all of the players in the system. We are therefore seeking carriers of old wisdom, bearers of new ways, path forgers, brave sense makers and moral compasses who hold us to our truth.
As an active member of the day to day operations, Theresa brings to the Board oversight on what's happening on the ground for review, and feeds this back to the working team.
Sandile brings to the board the real lived experience of the youth Amava Oluntu serves. His sensitivity to the harsh injustices faced every day at every turn, keep us focused and motivated to create systemic change so that future generations don’t have to undergo the same traumas. He is on the board to keep us real, and also to learn the inner runnings of an organisation so that he can apply these to his own journey in the future.
Yoli brings to the Board invaluable insights into the spaces between the divides that we strive to span. Her truth speaking continuously grounds us and calls us to attend to assumptions within ourselves before we take any steps out into the world.
Sue brings to the Board a lifetime of sense-making of the inner workings of organisations, what causes them to stumble and what helps them to thrive.
After completing his BCom in accounting at The University of Fort Hare, he moved into the NGO sector where he could combine his love for numbers and his quest for social justice. Having managed grant funding models locally and internationally for over 10 years, he comes with a vast body of knowledge in financial and organisational management, and we are very excited for him to be joining our team and improving our systems.
Board of Advisors
He is currently in the process of putting all of his experience into practice, growing off grid land stewardship and building the collective systems of governance required.
Amava Oluntu was founded in 2017 by Theresa Wigley, Yoliswa Mahobe, Mzukise Zele, and Calvin Dias. During a trip to the Eastern Cape, which led to the formation of Amava Oluntu, they were deeply moved by the abundance of knowledge and resources in the villages that they visited. This ignited the desire to create pathways of exchange between rural and urban centres of informal learning where connection could be restored, lost knowledge could be remembered and new knowledge could be gained. The belief was that through this sharing, both urban and rural communities could be revitalised. This vision continues to burn brightly for those who are taking the work forward now.