Johannesburg, South Africa
Sophiatown Ambassadors aim to engage young people from from across a diverse range of backgrounds to participate in personal development, the arts and leadership skills. Based in Johannesburg their work explores social and green issues. They were twinned with Poetry Circle Nowhere, Amsterdam as part of CTW 2010.
Trevor Huddleston Memorial Centre is a registered not for profit organisation situated in Sophiatown, a suburb rich in cultural diversity until the introduction of the group areas act of the South African Government in the 1920’s.
Oliver Tambo, Hugh Masekela, Desmond Tutu, Miriam Makeba, Nelson Mandela and Dolly Rathebe were among all the thousands of people who were affected by the forced removals and the demolishing of the area in 1955.
It aims to engage youth from across the ethnic spectrum to participate in personal development, arts and leadership skills that encompass real-life encounters. Its vision is for Sophiatown to be where people can engage in a dialogue and share their experiences without prejudice to become self-reliant community members.
As part of the application process for Contacting the World, Trevor Huddleston Memorial Centre developed their ongoing work with exploring issues of importance to youth in South Africa. The Ambassadors identified environmental concerns as high on the agenda. They discussed ideas of how they could explore different aspects of global economics and environmental issues, and the group identified a project about the patterns of migration among the birdlife between Africa and UK.
Sophiatown Ambassadors' performance as part of CTW was Ubuntu Spirit, showing the story of a young Dutch woman embarking on alife-changing journey to South Africa to see for herself the culture, people and the origins of humankind. Inspired by a dream she connects with a new energy, something she calls ‘releasing the Ubuntu-Spirit’.