A Motswana made history within the worldwide membership circles of the Junior Chamber International (JCI) when he was chosen as the award recipient that made him one of the top ten outstanding young persons of the world.
It is the first time since the inception of the competition that a Motswana has excelled.
Kitso Masi, 24, recently received an award for one of the ten outstanding young persons in the category of Personal Improvement /Accomplishment.
“This is the first time in history that a Motswana has won such a prestigious award,” President of the Botswana branch, Prince Bashe, told Sunday Standard.
Masi said that he had carried out quite a number of projects that focused on community development under the JCI flag.
He is currently shooting documentaries at Old Naledi in Gaborone for an African television programme called Imagine Africa.
Masi is running a youth-led sporting community development programme, which is based in the south east part of the country covering places such as Tlokweng, Otse, Ramotswa, Taung and Mogobane.
“We are basically using sports as a platform to develop the community, as a young person I felt I deserved the award because of the different programmes I have introduced to the youth,” explained Masi.
“I am also glad to have had the opportunity to learn more about community development from youth outside the country.”
The competition, which is generally known as TOYP (the outstanding young persons of the world) is a national program which operates under the global program of the JCI.
JCI Botswana is an active member of an organisation that has more than 115 countries as members.
The worldwide federation has more than half a million youth citizens, JCI senators and senior members in different parts of the world.
Bashe said that the TOYP program, which runs annually, serves to recognise those individuals all over the world who excel in their chosen fields, endeavors and show commitment to their communities.
“We also hope that by recognising these honorees we will provide fitting role models for the young leaders of tomorrow,” explained Bashe.
It is reported that JCI Botswana entered 8 participants for what they refer to as a global and highly contested flagship program, Masi and another team mate, Tshepang Mabaila, managed to make it to the top 30.
Unfortunately for Mabaila only Masi made the top ten after the judges made their choice.
Judges of the competition usually include personnel from the United Nations, the international chamber of commerce, business and community leaders, University professors, and JCI board of directors’ members.
Masi will be traveling to the JCI World Congress in Hammamet, Tunisia on the 16th to 18th November 2009 on a JCI paid trip.
At the congress, he will be featured at the TOYP ceremony and awarded the TOYP trophy.
After the ceremony, there will be a reception for honorees, special invitees, JCI Board members, Chief Delegates and community dignitaries.
“The Botswana flag will be flying high among the 115 countries that will be represented in Tunisia because of Masi,” said Bashe.