By Raphael Chesori, Secretary General, Africa YGN
News Courtesy of ATOMEPO Press
ATOMEXPO is the nuclear industry’s largest international congress and exhibition event that has been marked with enthusiasm and ecstasy for a decade now. Since its inauguration in 2009, as an initiative of Rosatom, the forum has attracted the key industry players, government agencies, representatives of international and public organizations, scientists, experts and nuclear enthusiasts where views, ideas and best practices in nuclear industry has been shared leading to a robust growth and realization of technological developments around the world.
The African Young Generation in Nuclear (African YGN) made the headlines in the local and international news following its success in the most coveted industry awards – the ATOMEXPO 2018 awards. The network emerged among the top in the category of “Public Communication” in this year’s edition of the awards, which are being held for the first time, with the aim to celebrate global excellence in the nuclear industry especially by the companies and entities that have contributed immensely and uniquely in promoting peaceful uses of nuclear science and technology for the benefit of human kind.
The competition attracted a total of 51 top notch companies and organizations drawn from 22 countries. The independent jury evaluated the applications from a professional standpoint and identified three finalists that were eventually shortlisted in each category.
‘Public Communication’, one of the five categories of the competition, which honored innovative projects in enhancing public awareness on matters nuclear technology. The African YGN received a special recognition for their exceptional work in nuclear advocacy and communication in informing the general public as well as creating opportunities for youth in Africa to pursue careers in nuclear. The network is implementing innovative projects at national level aimed at demystifying nuclear science and technology in Africa.
The African YGN leadership led by the President, Gaopalelwe Santswere, thanked the ATOMEXPO AWARDS 2018 organizers and the jury for the special recognition and the confidence they have in the young generation to bolster the concerted efforts on awareness creation and nuclear advocacy in Africa. According to ATOMEXPO Press, Gaopalelwe spoke on the sidelines noting that the award was such a great honor bestowed to African YGN and its affiliate networks: “I am truly humbled and honored as a young African and the President of the Africa YGN to be a part of these prestigious awards. We highly value that a respected international community such as is this has put such a great emphasis on allowing young people from around the world to flourish, thrive and receive recognition”.
His sentiments were echoed by the Secretary General of Africa YGN, Raphael Chesori, who described the success as “epic’’ and was quick to note that the African YGN was on the right track, guided by its principle as a proactive network of young professionals and the continued support from the industry.
Gaopalelwe echoed senior leaders, calling for global partnerships and collaborations especially by engaging and involving the youth as key actors in the quest for nuclear renaissance. He urged the global nuclear community to continue supporting youth-led organizations such as African YGN in a bid to build a sustainable future for the industry.
“The youth are the future of the nuclear industry, as young people we are preparing ourselves to take the industry to next level and at the same time improve the quality of life for millions of people across the globe.”
The African YGN, a continental affiliate network for the IYNC, has seen exponential growth since its formal launch in March 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya. This can be attributed to the strong commitment by the young professionals and the continued support from the industry in promoting peaceful uses of science and technology in Africa.