The Khanya Winter School 2011

From Crisis to Resistance

  1. This year, the Winter School will take place from 28 July to 5 August. The theme of the School is: ‘From Crisis to Resistance’.
The Khanya College Annual Winter School was launched in July 1999. The Winter School represents an important step in Khanya College’s response to the changing political and economic environment within which social movements and broader civil society organisations have to work. In many different ways, Khanya College programmes seek to assist communities in the difficult task of developing their responses to globalisation and its various manifestations.
Over the last 12 years, the school has been an important point of convergence for organisations; as a platform for debate, discussion, political theory, practical skills, networking and solidarity building. It thus provides spaces for activists from various social movements and civil society organisations across the region to work together across different sectors and interests. In 2009, the College changed the format of the school from a week long closed conference to a 10-day education festival. This has allowed the College to expand the audience of the school by opening it to the broader public.
Khanya College hopes that the Annual Winter School will contribute to regional responses that continue to emphasise social solidarity, popular democracy, organisation and mobilisation. This is what the overall theme of the Annual Winter School, “Mobilise and Organise for Social Change”, represents.
Aims of the School 
  • To provide the space for activists to critically reflect on their organising and mobilising work in the present national and global context.
  • To provide the space for activists to debate topical issues and exchange experiences with each other.
  • To provide the space for the emergence and revitalisation of progressive perspectives on social change.
  • To assist in developing the conceptual, organisational and public speaking skills of activists from different social movements.
  • To provide the space for building of regional social movements by bringing activists from the sub-region together.
  • To provide activists with the opportunity to build links and alliances among their various movements. 
Winter School 2011
The Winter Schools of 2009 and 2010 analysed both the global economic crisis, and crisis of resistance, respectively. These themes allowed for a critical examination of why the working class has been unable to defend itself against the decline in its living standards and against the closure of democratic spaces.
Emerging from the last two schools, the theme of the 2011 Winter School is “From Crisis to Resistance”. Popular movements have reached a strategic impasse: the movements have no immediate or long-term strategy of how to turn around this cycle of decline and weakness that has beset them. However, events in Egypt, Tunisia and Greece have shown there may be a way out of this impasse. It is against this background that the Winter School 2011 seeks to open discussions and dialogue among the various movements on the development of strategies that will respond to the impasse within the social justice movement.
Speakers and participants will seek to:
  • Locate the various activities within the context of neoliberal globalisation and its impact on the popular classes today
  • Bring to bear a gender perspective and analysis in the debate on various topics
  • Draw lessons frompast experiences of the social justice movement
  • Draw lessons from international experience of social justice movement
  • Strive to locate the theory and practice of organising under neoliberalism within an African context
 The Format
The Winter School will be organised into plenaries, parallel sessions or seminars, workshops and practical skills sessions. This year's school will have a greater variety of networks that focus on a range of struggles against neoliberalism and for economic and environmental justice. These include a faith organisations’ network to examine the role of religious institutions in service delivery protests and other struggles. Environmental justice activists will also meet as part of preparations towards the COP 17 conference. The NGO Fair will also have as its theme, “The environmental justice struggle” and the COP 17 conference. Youth organisations from Southern Africa will also meet to exchange views and experiences of resistance. The Winter School will also have theatre, poetry performances, exhibitions, screenings and other similar events.
Cost of the School 
Delegates who will stay for the duration of the school (5 days) will pay R5000. Those who attend only Network or Skills workshops will pay R3000. These costs include accommodation, catering, local transport (airport transfers etc), educational material,administration and facilitation fees. However, the fee does not include the costs of travelling to and from Johannesburg. A subsidy of 50% is available to organisations and activists and will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
For further information please contact:
Elijah Kodisang on + 27 (0) 11 336 9190 or + 27 (0) 84 377 3007 Fax: + 27 (0) 11 336 9196 Email: / See website:
* The Winter School is a project of Khanya College.
Linked to programme(s): 
Khanya Annual Winter School