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‘SA’s youth an untapped asset, not a problem’

24 January 2014
Xolisa Phillip

HOW do you motivate disadvantaged youth to have a positive outlook on the future? Social entrepreneur Rob Taylor, 58, has one solution: treat them with respect and reconnect them with the environment in a values-driven manner.

The married father of three sees gems where society sees problems.

“I believe the youth are treated as part of the problem – society adopts a glass half-empty outlook towards young people. They are an asset whose value is untapped,” he said.

This ethos saw the former Dimension Data director launching Columba Leadership with Young & Able managing director Buhle Dlamini in 2009.

Although its end-goal is simple, it has had a profound impact on those it has touched: schools affected have seen a dramatic improvement in academic performance and a decline in absenteeism.
 

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