untapped talent in disadvantaged communities could be harnessed to reconstruct South Africa, says Mamphela Ramphele.
“It is amazing how we live next to so much talent and innovation. This is what is needed to reconstruct our country,” the AgangSA leader said on a visit to the RLabs Academy, an NGO in Bridgetown, Athlone, yesterday.
Ramphele said the franchise created hope, particularly for disadvantaged youth.
During an hour-long presentation by academy members including former gangsters and drug addicts, Ramphele heard how they used technology and innovation to empower the poor to uplift themselves.
RLabs chief executive René Parker said their work included equipping people with computer and technical skills. The academy had trained over 7 000 people since 2011, while its online drug advice and support programme had reached about four million.
Rlabs trainer Terence Hendricks said he had developed a service on Mxit by which unemployed people could look for work.
The academy, which worked with 18 universities globally, offered a free service to the community, but businesses were charged, Parker said.