Following research undertaken in 2005,the organisation working alongside colleagues in Sierra Leone developed and now deliver a youth leadership programme that aims to bring about real cultural change.
It encourages and supports young people to maximise their potential to become responsible citizens and leaders with integrity. The programme provides an environment and offers opportunities for all participants to become politically astute, environmentally and culturally aware, and fosters commitment to the ideals of peace and justice, it is designed to enable participants to grasp and demonstrate a deeper understanding of these ideals through personal action and examples.
Residential Leadership Programme
This one week residential programme takes place in a tranquil, calm and family orientated environment; the participants are selected by their schools and SoA Leadership local committee members, for their ‘leadership potential’ and from a cross section of the population.
This highly interactive and fun programme builds on the participants knowledge about leadership. It encourages them to explore and challenge their own values and beliefs and the impact they have on their lives, communities, the environment and society in general. Field trips and engaging with local experts broadens their horizons and provides them with a different perspective of their world. A key aim of the programme is to ensure that they are not merely passive recipients of knowledge but that their learning translate into demonstrable positive changes.
Great care is taken to ensure that the programme is culturally appropriate and addresses issues within the context of their lives and own experiences.
The programme is currently jointly delivered by specialists in Sierra Leone and facilitators from UK.
SoA Leadership Clubs and Projects
The concept of SoA Clubs was developed by graduates of the programme and implemented in 2011.
The clubs are opened to all pupils who express a commitment to SoA’s principles and aims, and wish to actively participate in the club’s activities. Overall membership of the clubs has steadily increased.
The purpose of the clubs is to:
– Introduce SoA’s leadership principles, leadership knowledge and skills to pupils in schools who have not had the opportunity to attend the residential programme.
– Empower young people to explore and address issues that impact on their lives within schools and the wider communities and put something back into the community.
– Create a forum for school authorities to communicate with pupils and pupils to share their concerns with school authorities.
– Create a forum for young people to take responsibility for their self development.
– Continue the development of the residential programme graduates by providing them with the opportunity to practice their facilitation, presentation and leadership skills.
Developed to encourage ongoing learning beyond the residential programme, participants tackle a variety of issues that directly affect the them, their communities, their country and the world. The classes have covered topics like presentation skills and entrepreneurism.
All programmes, classes and projects are underpinned by a core principle that we encourage participants to adopt that we call RRISS.
Respect for self, fellow humans and the environment
Service to others
Self-belief and positive thinking