Series showcases South African ‘can-do’

15 November 2011

The fifth episode of Brand South Africa’s Play Your Part TV series, featuring a Harvard business graduate turned job creator, a world-renowned photographer passionate about sharing, and a soccer team with a difference, broadcasts on SABC 1 at 12h30 on Sunday, 20 November.

The 13-part television series promoting Brand SA’s Play Your Part campaign features inspirational stories of ordinary citizens getting out there to change the lives of others in their neighbourhoods, their communities and their cities.

Brand SA has travelled the length and breadth of the country asking ordinary South Africans how they are playing their part for positive social change, in the process uncovering a range of inspirational stories to share with the nation.

Unearthing, developing entrepreneurs

This week, the show features a Harvard business school graduate with two Masters degrees from Oxford University to boot – the kind of person you might expect to be on the upward-mobility-ladder at a large multinational corporation.

Not Yusuf Randera-Rees, who has chosen to invest his considerable learning into tackling the daunting issue of unemployment.

Together with close friend Ryan Pakter, Randera-Rees has founded the Awethu Project, which aims to unearth and develop entrepreneurs, finding resources for fledgling ventures and fast-tracking budding entrepreneurs on the road to success.

Photography, and sharing the passion

Jodi Bieber is a world renowned photographer whose work has graced galleries, museums and magazines around the world.

Undoubtedly one of the highlights of her career was the day her graphic yet tender picture of a mutilated Afghan young woman hit the cover of Time magazine. The controversy and debate it stimulated catapulted her into the world arena.

But it has been South Africa that has fascinated Bieber and formed the centre of her work. Her book, Between Dogs & Wolves, marks a 10-year period which Jodi spent photographing youths living on the fringes of society.

As product of The Market Photography Workshop, Bieber is passionate about sharing her experience with aspiring photographers, often lecturing and mentoring at The Market Theatre Photo Workshop, the successor of her alma mater.

Not your usual soccer players

Beka Ntsanwisi decided after her experiences with public health in her home province, Limpopo, to make an intervention by providing physical exercise as part of the rehabilitation of elderly patients.

During one of the aerobics classes she had organised, a stray soccer ball happened to roll through. The joy with which one of the participants kicked the ball gave them an idea: why not play soccer?

What started as a means to rehabilitate elderly female patients has turned into a team of some repute. Last year they played at the Veteren’s World Cup in America and are hoping to participate in other international events.

But more importantly, the team has created a supportive community that has made a difference in the lives of its members

‘Each one of us can make a difference’

“There are a number of opportunities, big and small, where each and every one of us can make a positive difference in the communities in which we live and operate,” Brand South Africa CEO Miller Matola said at the launch of the new show.

The TV series “will lift the spirits and inspire all South Africans with examples of how their fellow citizens are creating a South Africa we can all be proud of”.

Play Your Part is a social movement created by the Brand South Africa to inspire, empower and celebrate active citizenship. For more information, visit www.playyourpart.co.za.

SAinfo reporter