Atlantic Fellows for Health Equity in South Africa

Tekano is inspired by the achievable dream of building a more equal South Africa in which all people enjoy better health and wellbeing. Our name derives from the Sesotho word for “equality” and speaks to our goal of social justice.

We aim to foster a body of dynamic, progressive changemakers – working individually and in empowering networks – who can inspire and sustain some of the changes South Africa needs to bridge the enormous gulf between rich and poor and build a healthier nation.

The key to this is a visionary international leadership programme, the Atlantic Fellows, which aims to promote equity on five continents by investing in changemakers. Tekano is part of this initiative and home to the Atlantic Fellows for Health Equity in South Africa, a programme of learning and interactivity for social advocates, progressive professionals and innovators. The programme is designed, above all, to affirm, reinforce and connect leadership for health equity.

The establishment of Tekano and its role in the Atlantic Fellows programme have been made possible by a generous grant of US$45 million from The Atlantic Philanthropies. As Atlantic will make its final grants by the end of 2016, the Atlantic Fellows represent the foundation’s culminating investments in leaders who seek transformative change and greater equity in policies, practices and systems.

Tekano’s management board

Tekano is registered as a non-profit company in terms of the Companies Act and is governed by a management board comprising champions of public health and primary healthcare. Members of the board are:

Dr Tracey Naledi (Chair) Chief Director: Health Programmes, Western Cape Department of Health
Professor Steve Reid Head of Primary Health Care Directorate, University of Cape Town
Professor Laetitia Rispel Head of the School of Public Health, University of the Witwatersrand
Professor David Sanders Emeritus Professor, University of the Western Cape
Dr Mvuyo Tom Vice-Chancellor, University of Fort Hare

Atlantic Fellows at Tekano

Every year we will identify a fresh cohort of 30 Atlantic Fellows at Tekano – young and mid-career individuals in a variety of fields extending way beyond healthcare – and offer them an exciting programme of learning and engagement.

This will traverse territory as diverse as the built environment, international solidarity, food security, public health, and education. The qualities Tekano seeks in its Atlantic Fellows are a passion for human rights, the courage to take a stand, the imagination to create new ways of working, the personality to carry others with them, and the endurance to stay the journey.

The alumni network

As Atlantic Fellows at Tekano complete their one-year learning programme they will become part of an alumni network that will grow annually. South African alumni will have opportunities to interact with similar change-oriented networks in South East Asia, Europe, the United States and Australia. Building on the foundation of its fellowship programme and alumni network, Tekano will establish itself as a hub for critical, reflective and change-oriented initiatives to advance health equity.

Building on the foundation of its fellowship programme and alumni network, Tekano will establish itself as a hub for critical, reflective and change-oriented initiatives to advance health equity.

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