The Global Leader for Financial Dignity

HOPE Social Media

Home/In the News/Press Releases/Press Release

January 01 2008

World Economic Forum Young Global Leaders To Hold Dignity Day in South Africa

Global Dignity Co-Founders Stand with MEC Cameron Dugmore as They Introduce “A Course in Dignity” in Classrooms

Cape Town, South Africa -- 3 June 2008 -- Fellow Young Global Leaders John Hope Bryant, Operation HOPE Founder, Chairman and CEO and Vice Chairman of the U.S. President’s Council on Financial Literacy, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Haakon Magnus of Norway, and Professor Himanen of the University of Art & Design Helsinki, co-founders of Global Dignity (GD), led a “Dignity Day South Africa” initiative in a morning session held at Cape Town’s Zeekoevlei High School. The co-founders were also joined in the classroom by prominent African YGLs including Phuti Malabie of South Africa and Erik Charas of Mozambique, bringing true dignity to all youth present.

Lead by the distinguished co-founders of Global Dignity, and particularly in light of the recent violence and challenges in some of the under-served areas of South Africa, the Cape Town event will importantly promote the universal right of every human being to lead a dignified life. The movement, created as a result of the Young Global Leaders implementation of the World Economic Forum’s mission to create a better world, was held to help equip South African youth with the skills to obtain a human level of health care, education, income and security, but most of all a personal sense of dignity. The co-founders of Global Dignity believe that dignity is the real definition of wealth around the globe, and it is something that no one can take from you. It is within you.

“I have always said that there is a difference between being broke and being poor. That being broke is an economic condition, but being poor is a depressed condition of the spirit and a disabling frame of mind, and we must vow to never, ever be poor again. This is fundamental to the process of giving oneself dignity," said John Hope Bryant.

Bryant continued, “HOPE Global Initiatives is proud to promote, advocate, help advance and to partner with Global Dignity. By formulating a globally shared dream, Global Dignity and HOPE Global Initiatives are perfectly aligned in promoting opportunity around the world, to empower each individual to believe in his or her fundamental right to dignity, respect, and freedom, to make their own decisions in life.”

Young Global Leaders (YGLs) and others around the globe promote GD through the five Dignity Principles; sharing their personal experiences, including their successes and failures, and instances related with aspects of self respect, dignity and human rights.

The five Global Dignity principles are:
1. Every human being has a right to lead a dignified life.
2. A dignified life means an opportunity to fulfill one's potential, which is based on having a human level of health care, education, income and security.
3. Dignity means having the freedom to make decisions on one's life and to be met with respect for this right.
4. Dignity should be the basic guiding principle for all actions.
5. Ultimately, our own dignity is interdependent with the dignity of others.

Additionally, for the first time in history the “Course in Dignity” has also been approved by the South African national and provincial Minister of Education as an official curriculum component of HOPE’s Banking on Our Future, South Africa program, as part of the Education Department’s Life Skills requirement.

About Global Dignity
Global Dignity is an autonomous, non-profit and non-partisan project linked to the 2020 process of the World Economic Forum's Forum of Young Global Leaders, where young global leaders from politics, business, academia, and civil society have joined together to work for the improvement of the state of the world and people based on 5 principles of dignity. The Forum of Young Global Leaders group ranges from Presidents of African countries to socially conscientious business leaders such as the founders of Google, from leaders of the most influential civil society movements like Make Poverty History to leading academics and cultural figures of our time; for more information, see or

About HOPE Global Initiatives
Operation HOPE's (HOPE) international division, HOPE Global Initiatives, serves as a founding partner with Global Dignity. HOPE Global Initiatives was developed out of the organization’s leadership role in hosting Ambassadors and Heads of State visiting Southern California, as well as the founder’s former role with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, Geneva, Switzerland, as their first ever goodwill ambassador to the United States.
The role of HOPE Global Initiatives is to promote and advocate the benefits of economic empowerment as a tool for vastly improving the quality of life in developing countries, with a particular focus on developing countries on the African continent. The role has expanded to serve underserved communities throughout the world. For more information, see

Operation HOPE, Inc. (HOPE) is a non-government organization, founded immediately following the civil unrest of April 29, 1992 in Los Angeles. HOPE is America’s leading provider of economic tools and services. HOPE is an effective facilitator, lender, advocate and educator for and on behalf of the poor.

Operation HOPE, in partnership with Citi, Deutsche Bank, International Finance Corporation (World Bank Group), Standard Bank, Clinton Global Initiatives, Peace Corps South Africa, and the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund among others have committed to invest $1 million (U.S.) and to recruit, train and mobilize more than 250 local professional HOPE Corps volunteers in a new and innovative private/public partnership to teach a minimum 50,000 South African youth in financial literacy, A Course in Dignity and entrepreneurship in South Africa.