Nearly 15 years ago, Brightest Young Minds (BYM) started as a week-long summit for South Africa’s most innovative young leaders to come together, learn from the nation’s decision makers and craft solutions to relevant developmental challenges. The 15th annual BYM summit, proudly sponsored by Barclays Africa, will bring together Africa’s most inspiring young people in Johannesburg from 16 to 20 July 2015.
Each year, BYM identifies 100 change-makers to join the BYM network, connecting and mobilising these young people in order to create positive social impact. In 2015, BYM will not only invite 100 new members into its network, but will also bring back 50 of its most influential alumni.
New network members are selected based on their demonstrated commitment to creating positive social impact and innovation. Young Africans, or those living in an African country, between the ages of 20 and 32 are eligible to apply.
The 50 alumni invited to return to the BYM summit will be selected based on their demonstrated impact and continued commitment to living a life of social responsibility. All BYM alumni since the organisation’s inception in 2000 are welcome to reapply.
The 2015 BYM summit theme is #TIA (This is Africa), a phrase which is generally associated with negative connotations, describing things like power outages and water cuts. However, BYM will turn #TIA on its head and give it a positive spin. The organisation will showcase the powerful wave of positive change coming from young people across the continent, ensuring African excellence is included in the African story.
Delegates attending the summit will hear from African’s who have made their mark globally through innovation, entrepreneurship, politics and more. Using the Insights Discovery product provided by BYM partner company Connemara, they will also add to their leadership tool-set by learning how to understand and manage their own and others’ leadership preferences.
The final phase of the summit truly sets BYM apart. In addition to speaking about how Africa’s challenges can be turned into opportunities, delegates will learn project development skills as they take action to see how they can make it happen.
Delegates will work in teams to design start-up like solutions to social, economic and/or cultural challenges in just 24 hours. Their problem-shattering ideas will be presented to a panel with the possibility of being awarded funding and implementation support.
Being part of the summit is the entry point into the BYM network and the key to accessing BYM alumni resources. Delegates get to engage with African leaders, but more importantly, form relationships with likeminded individuals that may lead to life-long friendships and business partnerships.
BYM CEO Madelynne Wager says, “Young Africans everywhere are taking responsibility for improving their communities. BYM exists to identify these young people and take their initiatives and impact to the next level.”
For more information or to get involved contact: