South African Project Plans to Use Country’s Langa Township as a Model to Boost Housing Development in the Region

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A South Africa-based initiative is gearing up to use the country’s Langa Township project as a model to boost housing development in the region

The Township, commonly referred to as Langa Quarter (LQ), is located in Langa in Cape Town. It is the first planned black African township in South Africa. The prototype ‘Social Enterprise Precinct (SEP) was developed from the ground up and covers an area of 8 streets 207 formal houses and is sustained by tourism.

The project is a product of ‘iKhaya Le Langa’, a South African non-profit organisation that uses ‘people, planet, profit’ (PPP) principles and sustainable business tourism to regenerate the region.

Founded by Tony Elvin, of Tony Elvin Associates SA, iKhaya Le Langa translates to ‘the house of sun’.

YPO, the premier global leadership organization for more than 27,000 chief executives in over 130 countries and the global platform for them to engage, learn and grow, commended the project’s success thus far.

At the 2019 YPO EDGE, the organization’s premier visionary showcase of thought leadership and innovation, Anthony Ginsberg, Managing Director of GinsGlobal Index Fund and Chairman of YPO Financial Services Network said a common trait of leaders, which is evident in the latest Global Leadership survey conducted by YPO among the CEOs, is a strong desire to give back and positively impact society.

Each year, business leaders from around the world gather for the YPO EDGE. For two days, members, convene with world-renowned thought leaders to address key issues in business, politics, science, technology, philanthropy and the humanities. T

The event, hosted on a different continent each year, offers exceptional educational opportunities for attendees while helping the global leaders of today shape the world of tomorrow.

The latest host city to YPO EDGE, Cape Town, South Africa, was the recipient of much of this generosity, some of it in the form of a donation to iKhaya Le Langa, a movement to sustainably uplift Cape Town’s oldest township.

In recent years, Langa had undergone a considerable revival. Now, it is a hub of cultural activity, jazz, street art, dance, and a top-rated place to stay for tourists and locals alike.

The Langa Quarter is one of South Africa’s foremost success stories so far, forming part of the greater iKhaya Le Langa not-for-profit (NPO), which aims to revitalise the region as a social enterprise precinct and cleaner, greener, safer area of the township.

YPO is currently working with Tony Elvin on InSTED, a project linked to the Langa initiative.

“Collaborating with Tony on the InSTED project is a way to sustainably entrench the inspiration, hope and energy of YPO EDGE in a way that will bring lasting benefits to the community of Langa and South Africa as a whole,” explained Paul Berman Host City Chair of YPO EDGE.

“Langa Quarter is an excellent example of how much can be achieved when we all work together,” he said.

InSTED will be an important way to communicate and implement all the NPO’s learnings from the last ten years, including: Developing Langa Quarter into a prototype Social Enterprise Precinct through: Proactively zoning homes for hospitality.

It will also achieve this through organizing the Langa Quarter neighbourhood watch for a cleaner, greener, safer area; Continuing Community-based Tourism (CBT) Innovation by: Developing the Langa Quarter Homestay Hotel, which is a 40-bed ‘homestay’ hotel consisting of 18 homes; and finally Running the Inter Community Tourism Agency, which advocates for tourism in a township, not township tourism

Additionally, InSTED will house the Academic Partnership Centre, as a resource centre for interns, researchers and students, and it will become a tech innovation hub.

“The tipping-point principle applies here. If we can create cleaner, greener, safer neighbourhoods, with vibrant art and music that celebrates the history and culture of our communities, we can catalyse ongoing job creation through sustained tourism,” said Elvin.

“Partnering with Airbnb has helped bring credibility to accelerate the growth of our Homestay Hotel. Working with community ambassadors has been critical to making Langa safer. Joining forces with the Inter Community Tourism Agency has been essential to making sure tourism is done respectfully and sustainably,” he concluded.

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