The annual Junior Chamber International (JCI) Conference begins on 4 May at the Sandton Convention Centre. More than just a conference for business minded entrepreneurs, workshops during the event will feature a strong social and community building slant.
Junior Chamber International (JCI) members are encouraged to use their business knowledge and experience to become grassroots activists in their own communities. The international non-profit comprises engaged and active citizens committed to improving the globe.
Community action to make a better world is one of the principles that drives Brand South Africa as an organisation. For this reason we are proud to be co-sponsors of the event.
The African region conference will give young South Africans the opportunity to network with global entrepreneurs and social leaders. Members will spend four days discussing international and regional challenges and sharing experiences that can create positive change across African communities.
In October 2015 JCI celebrated its centenary. Branches across the globe celebrated by advocating for more active citizenship. As JCI Ambassador and UN Global Compact Senior Advisor Fred Dubee told a gathering in Finland, “Let us base what we do today and tomorrow on the robust platform that has been erected with so much care and commitment over the past 100 years and as we do, let us be conscious that what we do now will have an impact that will shape the next 100 brilliant and valuable years of JCI.”
The organisation’s members believe by being socially active we can create sustainable positive change. Individuals have as much of a responsibility as governments and business to create a more equitable and caring world.
Members are guided by five distinct principles:
• Educate yourself. By understanding the root causes of communal issues JCI members can prove themselves to be vital in helping make change happen.
• Spread awareness: JCI members are encouraged to begin a conversation in their community around challenges. Whether they choose to do that face to face, digitally or through encouraging community participation, members are urged to lead social activism.
• Support grassroots efforts: Volunteer or become involved with organisations and campaigns that are working for positive change. If challenges are not being addressed, start a conversation or an organisation. Reach out across communal and national borders to look for solutions or to offer help.
• Advocate: All challenges have a face and solutions need to be based on protecting the dignity of people. JCI members are guided by the idea that welcoming people matters more than focusing on what makes us different.
• Support approaches that promise long term solutions: Find ways to build vibrant and integrated communities instead of allowing insularity. Host opportunities where people can learn about each other.