Jacob has served quietly, managed subtly, and engaged genuinely over his entire College career. As a long-standing member of both Community Engagement and Interact Club Committees, Jacob has become steeped in the need for innovation, accountability, and authentic engagement with communities.
He has been responsible for the smooth running of the Mullins House projects, for which he will be remembered by our partners, as he had, with each House project, strategically thought of its impact on the stakeholders as well as the sustainability of each project. He has also taken responsibility for several ongoing projects, most notably Academic Extension, Monday Clubs where he continues to serve alongside junior boys.
Jacob has been an example of servant leadership. His completion of more than 100 hours of community engagement has earned him the Gold Standard of the President’s Award (which is proud to be the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award in South Africa), and this is indicative of his determination to see processes thoroughly finished. To have done so in his penultimate year at the College, and his continued involvement in all aspects of the Community Engagement programmes, has shown that this was motivated by neither a passing fancy nor desire for personal aggrandizement.
He has always been willing to listen to the opinions of others even if they have been different to his own. This style of leadership has made him a popular and respected leader. He has been strategic and principled in his role as Community Engagement Prefect at College in 2021. He has embraced the challenges and benefits of running formal meetings, seeing decisions implemented, and delegating in order to allow people to complete processes so that they have genuine ownership, without him losing sight of the desired outcome. A testament to this is when he and his peers managed to host events like 24 4 Smiley in 2020.
Jacob has been a critical member of the library monitors’ team since he arrived at College. He has recruited, and mentored boys, and modelled what libraries should be doing, by taking the resources of the Cawse Library out to serve the Makhanda Community and the formation of the Interact Club at College. Under Jacob’s leadership in a time of uncertainty due to Covid-19, the St Andrew’s College Community Engagement team managed to make a positive contribution in the community of Makhanda by donating food parcels, assisted several soup kitchens that provided food to the vulnerable members of our community. This has seen the start of the vegetable garden at College which will continue to provide balanced meals for the soup kitchens in Makhanda.
Jacob has been one of a kind – a trail-blazer – and we believe that he is, without any doubt, a most deserving recipient of Honours for Community Engagement.
Report by Ms Ncumisa Mzaza