Africa 2012

 

No Existence Without Co-existence – South Africa

It has been said that Africa was once the cradle of mankind and as such there was not a more appropriate place to hold the 2012 Round Square conference. Penryn College South Africa was our destination and our theme, No existence, without co-existence. Charlie Scott, Sam Hutton, Mickey O’Sullivan, Charlie Sutherland and I flew through a 24 hour night and were soon at the conference. It took little more than a day for us to fit onto our own rung of the social ladder, and in such a situation with people from across the world with various backgrounds, there was no choice but to co-exist and leave your comfort zone behind.

While on conference we embarked on adventure activities, visited a school run down by HIV-AIDS and poverty as well as donating everyday items and designing a personalized t-shirt for a child of any age at the support a stranger activity. We also listened to several motivational speakers including a very humorous African man from a background of impossible hardship, a mountaineer inspiring us with the concept of taking and using opportunities given, a wild life photographer, who taught us that we not only had to co-exist with each other as the human race but with animals as well, a geologist and a rhino conservationist. One evening was spent in Kruger National Park where we enjoyed listening to African dancers and drummers before heading to our cabins where we slept listening to the distant calling of lion prides.

After the six day conference we travelled for an additional five on the post conference tour, down the coast of South Africa, through several, vastly different biomes, which brought with them an assortment of different animals. We saw hippos, baboons, monkeys and when, added to the leopards, lions, elephants, rhinos, zebras and giraffes that we saw in Kruger, made an enormous list of bizarre animals we spotted.

Our adventure to the continent of Africa was more than just a conference and a bus trip. On the way we encountered adversity, adventure and a need for common decency. We will never forget the people we met there, and know that such a feeling of accomplishment will be hard to come by in the future. It made us realise that our generation is not the generation of the future – but the generation of the present. We can make a change, through respect, loyalty, compassion, mateship, endearment and love. There truly is no existence without co-existence.
Edward Inchbold


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