MCW GLOBAL IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ITS AFFILIATE, MC-ZAMBIA HOLDS YOUNG LEADERS CONFERENCE FOCUSED ON LEADERSHIP AND ICT INTEGRATION IN THE EDUCATION SECTOR OF EAST AND SOUTHERN AFRICA
April 26, 2023, Lusaka, Zambia – MCW Global, in partnership with its affiliate, MC-Zambia, held a Young Leaders Conference from April 24th through April 26th at the Chamba Valley Exotic Hotel in Lusaka, Zambia focusing on Leadership in ICT Integration in Primary and Secondary Education for East and Southern African young ICT professionals. Bringing together 25 participants from Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Zambia, the Conference redefined the concept of leadership and brought ICT professionals together to forge solutions for the challenges faced in education by creating a regional network.
The aim of the Conference was to improve ICT in primary and secondary education by expanding participants’ leadership knowledge while engaging them in meaningful discussions that advance ICT proficiency in their region. Additionally, the Conference provided a platform for participants to identify and forge solutions for the prevailing challenges in ICT and education through a region-specific lens. Participants left the Conference connected to a wider network of support, consisting of professionals from various backgrounds including the ICT, private and education sectors.
The first day of the Conference was dedicated to a conversation about Leadership. The event was officially launched by the Permanent Secretary from the Ministry of Education, Education Services in Zambia, Joel Kamoko. He was joined by the District Education Board Secretary of Kafue in Zambia, Belina Moono.
The Permanent Secretary urged participants to take a lead in making changes in the education sector through ICT and to join the rest of the world in championing technological advancements in East and Southern Africa. “It is important to bring the hurdles and challenges [of ICT] to the forefront and discuss with like-minded individuals to find solutions to these challenges,” he encouraged us. The rest of the day was dedicated to redefining leadership and exploring what leadership means for ICT professionals and their respective communities. When asked to describe the day in one word, Emmanuel from Zambia said, “Mind-opening!” The next session, “Introspection as a Leader” was led by Melissa Sarah Hamalambo, Executive Director of the Center for Young Leaders in Africa (CYLA) Zambia who focused on Reflective Leadership.
The second day of the Conference focused on Challenges in ICT integration in primary and secondary education of the East and Southern Africa region. Through panel discussions and interaction with speakers, participants looked closely at the challenges in ICT integration across the East and Southern Africa region. The day ended with participants engaging in breakout workshops to come up with solutions to the challenges identified in the categories of infrastructure and training and education. “My day was amazing. I felt very intelligent during the group session because we were made to brainstorm solutions to the given ICT challenge and I learnt so much. This is a room full of possibilities,” said Regina Tembo, Zambia – ICT professional.
The third and final day of the Conference gave the participants an immersive experience of ICT integration in a rural setting. The participants started their day early by making a trip to a Mungu Basic School, in the rural community of Kafue, to observe and learn from a practical setting. The rest of the day focused on Community Outreach & Resource Mobilization. Participants underwent a one-hour session on Networking and Leveraging Resources led by Anne Lise Uwingabiye, Program Officer, MC-Rwanda. The event was concluded by a Networking Closing Ceremony where participants received certificates of completion and also had the chance to engage friends, supporters, and partners of MCW Global and MC-Zambia.
The conference will be followed by three optional vision planning webinars for the participants to build their community projects. Participants with actionable project plans will then be invited to apply for financial support (up to $300) to help them in implementation. In addition to the financial support, participants will also be assigned to a mentor from MCW Global’s Young Leaders Program Alumni to guide them through their implementation process.
The Young Leaders Conference Zambia 2023 was co-hosted by MCW Global and its affiliate MC-Zambia. The Young Leaders Conference leverages leadership to solve region-specific issues through networking and guided discourse about community issues. It mobilizes participants to carve out solutions to their communities’ most pressing needs in the areas of health, education, and economic security. The Conference is held bi-annually in different regions worldwide and is tailored for community development practitioners.