Social Cohesion Workshop

In mid-2015, Prof Doreen Atkinson of the KDF was requested by the Mandela Initiative, based at the University of Cape Town, to host a Karoo workshop on Social Cohesion. At the same time, the idea was supported by Prof Jonathan Jansen of the University of the Free State.

The guiding spirit in this project was Prof Francis Wilson of UCT, who has spent a lifetime researching and engaging on poverty and social challenges in South Africa (see Without his support and encouragement, this remarkable workshop would never have succeeded.

Between 24 and 26 August 2016, the workshop took place at Melton Wold Guest Farm, near Victoria West. It was attended by 35 unusual and creative people, who grappled with some tough questions facing South Africa. The workshop included four KDF Trustees participated (Doreen Atkinson, Prof Mike de Jongh, Ms Helene Smuts, and Lindile Fikizolo), as well as Sindisile Madyo, a Director of Karoo Dynamics.

The report can be accessed on the Mandela Initiative Innovations page:, which offers a treasure-trove of inspiring projects and ideas.