Durban – Government is giving all South Africans a chance to voice their feelings through its “South African at Heart” campaign.
On Wednesday, the KwaZulu-Natal Arts and Culture Department launched its programmes to support the “South African at Heart” campaign.
The campaign is aimed at strengthening social cohesion through instigating a national conversation about what value system should govern every South African’s thinking and behaviour.
Teams from the national department have started to visit all parts of the nation, getting South Africans to talk about what it means to belong to the country and what values are important to them.
Each province has their own programmes and will present the feedback at a national summit next month.
KZN coordinator Raj Govender said at a media briefing community that conversations would take place from June 18 until June 25.
“Every year we have national events like Women’s Day, Heritage Day but these events are still compartmentalised. We still need to reach out to all communities and bring people together. This campaign is about sharing our visions, and then finding strategies to live together,” said Govender.
There are four key pillars – diversity, inclusiveness, access and values – that make up social cohesion. This is necessary to address outcome 12 of government’s which is to build an efficient, effective and development orientated public service. Also, to build an empowered, inclusive and fair society.
“We will be on the streets, at taxi ranks, train stations, and in shopping centres. We will be going into communities to host conservations about what makes us South African at heart. We want to know what you think,” said Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile in a statement.
The campaign will operate in three stages. Stage one will be to get people’s views on the subject. These views will then be discussed at a national summit next month. Resolutions are then expected to be derived from the summit with the intention to get South Africans to start living by them.
“This campaign is not just a conversation but also a call to action. This is a very important journey that we as South Africans are embarking on. It’s important that every one of us takes part if we are to protect our democracy,” said Mashatile.
As part of the campaign, South Africans can also log onto www.dac.gov.za – where they can complete surveys in different languages. – Kemantha Govender, BuaNews