Youth empowerment on South Africa’s Wild Coast
Venue: CCS Seminar Room, 602, 6th Floor, MTB Tower, Howard College
Maia’s research examined how the intersection of love and power can lead to the betterment of our world. It looks at how they interact in the context of creating an effective youth empowerment program for grade ten students in South Africa. Using Participatory Action Research (Lynn, 2005) she explores how Asset-Based Community Development (Kretzmann & McKnight, 1996), integral theory (Wilber, 1998), and the Power Cube (Gaventa, 2006) can be understood and used to bring love and power together in an attempt at positive social change. During her six months on the Wild Coast of South Africa, she explored the concepts of love and power in various contexts and eventually created ThandaMandla a youth empowerment program at Baleni Senior Secondary School that responded to the needs of the young people she was working with. Her thesis shares her mental, spiritual and academic quest to understand the role of love and power in creating positive and meaningful social change.
Maia is currently completing an MA in Environmental Education and Communication at Royal Roads University, exploring the intersection of love and power for social change. She is the founder of FUN Society (Friends Uniting for Nature Society), an award-winning Canadian charity that runs leadership, empowerment and environmental education programs in Canada and South Africa. She loves traveling all around the world, experiencing other cultures and finding creative ways to make the world a better place.