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Posted on: Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Coming Soon: 2012 Sustain Our Africa Summit

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Sustain our Africa

Sustain our Africa

Oct 24–26 2012 V & A Waterfront: for those who know ‘There is no Planet B’.

SOA or Sustain our Africa is the continent’s first annual sustainability summit where you can hear 50 change agents over three days. It’s pegged as a ‘magical three-day journey’ that is not just another conference, but a place to present, share and debate over.

The dialogue is intended as a guide towards lively debate that will lead to solutions to what the team behind Sustain Our Africa call ‘our most pressing social, economic and environmental challenges’.

It promises to ‘change the way you see the world, the way you live in it and the way you do business’ and it tackles an entire spectrum of sustainability issues: food security, climate change, social investment, active citizenry, water security, biodiversity, biomimicry, renewable energy, blue economy, activism, more with less …

The ethos behind the summit is that the status quo, economically, is unsustainable. Business as usual involves a process of depleting the very natural resources we need in order to survive, and an attempt to overcome poverty by growing the economy. Developing countries are experiencing climate change, a decline in oil supply, productive soils, metals, clean water and forest products.

To catch up with developing countries small-scale countries, like South Africa, and fast-developing large-scale countries, like China, will quite simply run out of natural resources if they adopt the same methods. We need a different set of solutions. The summit focuses on providing the space in which to find these solutions.

The programme follows a format of: Inspiration cafes – interactive world cafe sessions to find solutions for sustainable futures; Voices of Resilience – keynote speakers that include Kumi Naidoo, Jason Drew, Nicola Robbins, Mphatheleni Makaulule, Peter Willis, Jeunesse Parks, Mark Swilling, Cormac Cullinan, Ian Macullum, Grace Stead, Robert Zipplies and many more; Voting for Change – live voting on key issues; Change Debates – looking at all the perspectives; SOA Talks – 15 minute stories of change; Change Rooms – thinktanks for solutions; and Inspirational Pause – inspiring entertainment.

Day one addresses awareness for change, day two inspiration for change, and day three the tools for change.

The summit is aimed at all business, civil society, academic and government leaders. But all South Africans can get involved.

‘For the first time in the history of mankind we have a common cause to fight for – a cause that we can all believe in. A cause that supercedes race, colour, creed, religion, nation, status, political belief or ego. A cause to fight for our collective survival on the only planet we all call home.’ – The change manifesto

Enough. For all. Forever.

I’m inspired. Are you?

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Wanda Coustas


Wanda Coustas has written in one form or another for 10 years, seven of them as a copyblogger. She has travelled the Western Cape extensively and the rest of the country in protracted road trips that have given her both joy and an ongoing relish for experiencing what she writes about first-hand. She is a trained opera singer, poet, eurythmy dancer, philosopher, and bee whisperer.

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