Collective impact is the principle that complex social issues like education demand coordinated response from a group of important actors from different sectors committed to a common agenda. Young people spend 20% of their day in school. It stands to reason that their experiences from the rest of the day have a major impact on their ability to learn. Therefore, it is necessary that the many other actors whose work affects them come together to coordinate their support for youth successfully meeting both social and academic benchmarks along the education continuum from pre-primary through tertiary education and into the world of work.
Collective impact is different from collaboration though. Because actors are busy delivering their services, it is extremely difficult to manage such a breadth of relationships. One organisation must facilitate the process of articulating common goals, coordinate communication between partners and manage the data and knowledge partners contribute so that it’s acted upon effectively. Amandla Development plays that central role.
Because of apartheid’s legacy, there is a stark difference between resources of schools and communities. There is also a legacy of exclusion not just on the basis of race. The long-term impact is continued disadvantage for students of colour, young women, LGBT students, students from rural areas, and the list goes on. Bringing together community leadership to agree on a common vision of success for all youth is a major step in redressing the injustices of the past and driving a paradigm that creates opportunity for all.