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Learners battle it out at the Heritage Education Schools Outreach Programme

Nine schools from around the country will be representing each of their provinces to battle it out for the first prize in the Heritage Education Schools Outreach Programme (HESOP) at the Lesedi Cultural Village in Gauteng from 3 to 7 October 2016. This is part of the National Heritage Month activities to celebrate living heritage.

The search for a group of Grade 8 learners who are passionate about their heritage started in July at the regional eliminations that were conducted by the National Heritage Council of South Africa (NHC) and the Department of Basic Education (DBE) in conjunction with National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) as well as the National Arts Council (NAC).

The HESOP is aimed at granting learners an opportunity to know more about their heritage and culture as a tool of nation building. For the past years, this programme has had a positive impact on the lives of the youth equipping them with a sense of purpose and appreciation of our cultural diversity. The participating candidates realize their self-identity and self-consciousness as South Africans. The most important value of this programme is that it helps the learners to develop intercultural appreciation which is important in our culturally diverse country.

The NHC together with the DBE annually afford a group of learners from various parts of the country on a weeklong camp where they will be exposed to the diversity of South Africa’s cultures, each other’s heritage, history, values of Ubuntu and personal development.

“This programme seeks to build young people who are proud of their African heritage to conserve it for future generations. At the NHC we understand that learners are better able to carry the responsibility to continue the legacy of our heritage”, says Advocate Sonwabile Mancotywa CEO of the NHC.

During the camp the learners will be judged by a panel on the quality of research on a prepared topic, a presentation and debate on issues of heritage.

The top three schools will walk away with book hamper prizes for their libraries to the value of (First prize) R25, 000, (Second prize) R15, 000 and (Third prize) R10, 000. The winners of the 2016 challenge will be announced at a ceremony on 6 October 2016.

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