How We Came To Be

Young and Able was founded in 2003 by Buhle Dlamini, a young entrepreneur with a background in youth development when he was only 23. The origin of Young and Able is closely interlinked with a story of authentic intercultural amalgamation that dates back to a period in South Africa’s history that is marked by social anxiety, cultural uncertainty and lingering racial tensions.

It is a narrative that demonstrates the possibility for individuals and society to change by vividly representing the challenges that once beset and still confront South Africa, and exemplifies how a group of young people overcame these challenges to reach a place of true understanding, acceptance and cooperation.

Before we ever conceived the idea of building a business, we were already living the stories we now share with our audiences. And, because of this, we are able to communicate powerfully on several themes in a way that is self-inclusive and is based on personal experience. We are also able to serve, time and time again, as catalysts for genuine, lasting change in the lives of both individuals and organisations.

A Close Encounter of Another Kind

The Young and Able story begins at the dawn of democracy when the founding members of Young and Able first met at a campsite in the Magaliesburg mountain range under the banner of Youth For Christ. It was a time when South Africa was still reeling from the after-pains of its newly born democracy and, for many of these young people, the first encounter with people from different races and cultures.

The Beginning of Catalytic Conversations

In this intimate setting, genuine connections were formed at a personal level, beyond racial and cultural differences. The common thread of humanity became visible to all and a seed was sown for the development of enduring relationships and, eventually, for the formation of an organisation that would share the experiences and knowledge uncovered by this group of young people.

In the years preceding the establishment of Young and Able, the friendships, experiences and knowledge that came to form the foundation of the organisation found opportunity for consolidation through a series of defining moments that took place over a number of years. These moments were marked by deep realisations of truths that have since been expounded to form learning modules and keynote presentations.

Rooted In Real Experience

Many of these moments, that now comprise the anecdotal content of our presentations, came through novel and sometimes awkward cross-cultural experiences such as intimate visits to the homes of people of other races and cultures. Thanks to this fortunate fusion of encounters, we were able to nurture the new perspectives and approaches that we now share with others.

It is because of our rich historical background that is steeped in real human experiences that Young and Able has come to be recognised as an organisation that is distinctly human and realistic in its approach to activating, motivating and accelerating the potential in people from all backgrounds, cultures and creeds.

Social Scientists | Conversationalists | Engagement Experts
Because of our unique etymology and brand of authentic cultural diversity, we have established ourselves as an organisation that truly understands and appreciates individual differences and is able to challenge and redesign social norms in contexts of various kinds. We are able to do this through conscious, deliberate behaviour that is aimed at building more constructive and productive environments and interactions. Young & Able was established in 2003 by Buhle Dlamini and we are a BEE Level 3 Contributor.
Young and Able is defined by a strong culture built on deeply set values and proven process facilitation methods that include: The Power of storytelling and shared experience Voice Listening Suspension (of judgment) Respecting Integrity and Authenticity Self-inclusion and Personal Investment As a matter of principle, we do not teach anything that we do not live in our personal capacities. Inasmuch as is possible, we endeavour, as a team, to consciously practice the principles that we advocate and foster a self-inclusive facilitation style that is not in exile of our audience.
  • Buhle Dlamini was awarded the Platinum Future100 Entrepreneur SA Award in recognition of his entrepreneurial contribution in the development space.
  • Co-developed and facilitated the Qiniso Dialogues for GIBS and the Mail and Guardian, getting young leaders from diverse backgrounds to focus on the kind of South Africa they want to build
  • Facilitated national roadshows for Transnet Freight Rail, Engen and Europcar.
  • Designed and delivered the Unilever Inclusive Culture organisational transformation process.
  • Continued to lead the Heartlines Mentorship Initiative, supporting relationships between 4,200 mentors and their mentees nationally.

Our Value Proposition

We pride ourselves in our identity as an innovative, thought-leading company of professional consultants and trainers who deliver realistic learning solutions that are practical, personally engaging and effective. Our solutions are comprehensive and designed to ensure a deep and immersive learning experience by making three tangible contact points available to learners:
  • Facilitator
  • Process
  • Material Learning Resources