ORAL HISTORY FOR PERSONAL LEADERSHIP, DEVELOPMENT AND GROWTH
The program is part of ALYCDO’s ongoing youth development philosophy. This is a program that is groundedin one of Africa’s age-old traditions of storytelling through folk tales. Long ago, it was the grandmother who would sit around the fire and recite folktales to her grandchildren. These stories had a lot of moral lessons, and this is were a lot of cultural wisdom was transmitted sitting around a fire in the evening. This program was born out of a promotional program that we had organized for parents/guardians and their children. We were promoting Bridging the Gap Youth Leadership Training Program at Theo Mbambisa Hall.
We had prepared a power point presentation and the sitting arrangement for invitees had this consideration. However, our projector gave us problems such that we could not use our power point presentation. Because of this, we changed the sitting arrange for invitees and we created a circle. In this fashion the promotional presentation was presented. As the conversation unfolded in the question and answer segment it took its own form that we had not anticipated before and grew into something that was very rich and insightful. At the end, because of the authenticity of the conversation that developed, one of the parents asked us when we will meet for another session. This question is the one that made us to think what was in that conversation that we can take to promote to the next conversation.
Looking closely, we realised that there was an older generation that could be used to share its insights into life and personal leadership at a very micro level. This generation would not just pour guidance but through a guided conversation by ALYCDO. The younger generation is not the only one that gains life insights in personal leadership they can also learn from their children. Difficult conversations that are sometimes difficult to have at home in the African elder tradition sense can be easily tackled here because it is a neutral platform. Instead of waiting for motivational speakers to give insights to younger people we ask everyday people in their immediate lives to share their life experiences through guided conversations by ALYCDO hence oral history for personal leadership and development. We have also added a communal element to it by adding the element “bring and share” This bring, and share will be food to share among participants for starters and is open to be exploited in whatever form it develops.