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28 May 2019 | Story Xolisa Mnukwa
Siphila Dlamini
Siphila Dlamini represented the UFS at the 15th Southern Africa Scout Youth Forum.

During the short April holidays, first-year BA student, Siphila Dlamini, led and participated in the 15th Southern Africa Scout Youth Forum and the 41st Southern Africa Scout Conference. Siphila previously also represented South Africa in the 8th and 13th World Scout Youth Forums in Baku, Azerbaijan and Harare, Zimbabwe respectively. He also participated in the 2018 International Leadership Training in Lilongwe, Malawi.

Siphila was elected as a member of the Southern Africa Youth Committee for the term 2017-2020, with the mandate of representing young leaders in decision making and youth engagement at Zonal level of the Southern Africa Scout Youth Forum.

He formed part of the forum committee and chaired several sessions of the proceedings since the tender age of 14. Youth leaders from Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries such as Botswana, the Kingdom of Eswatini, Malawi, South Africa, Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe attended the conference. 

This 15th forum was themed ‘The Role of young people during emergencies’. Throughout the forum, young people deliberated on strategies to improve decision making in national scout organisations within their respective countries. The Southern Zone Youth Forum empowers young people by equipping them with good decision-making skills and increasing youth engagement on the African continent. 

According to Siphila, the Southern Zone Youth Forum is an effective tool for youth engagement and the continuation of skills development among young people in Southern Africa. It allows the youth to reflect on their growth and achievement, while broadening the unique impact of scouting in the world. 

News Archive

Training in critical medical skills receives preference at the UFS
2015-07-24

The UFS bought a new simulator for surgeons to learn how to perform laparoscopic operations. During the launch of the simulator, Dr Mathys Labuschagne (left), Head of the Clinical Simulation and Skills Unit, illustrates to Prof Gert van Zyl, Dean of the faculty, how the simulator works.
Photo: Rene-Jean van der Berg

The Clinical Simulation and Skills Unit in the University of the Free State (UFS) Faculty of Health Sciences purchased a new laparoscopic simulator for R1.2 million recently. The simulator will be used to teach postgraduate medical students how to perform laparoscopic surgery. The UFS is currently the only university in the country, and one of only two institutions in South Africa, that own such a simulator.

The Lapsim simulator, from Surgical Science in Sweden, is a highly sophisticated computerised tool for the training and improvement of laparoscopic surgical skills in postgraduate students within the surgical disciplines.

“The purpose of a simulator is not to replace training on patients, but to help registrars in acquiring basic laparoscopic surgical skills,” says Dr Mathys Labuschagne, Head of the Clinical Simulation and Skills Unit.

These skills include depth perception, hand-eye-coordination, instrument handling, precision and speed, which are essential before operations can be performed on patients.

Prof Gert van Zyl, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, says this simulator is very important for the UFS to train registrars more effectively in theatre work.

“Not only registrars will benefit from this, but qualified surgeons may also make use of it to improve their skills.”

The simulator is pre-programmed for different medical conditions that laparoscopic surgery is traditionally used for. Programmes can be selected for procedures such as sterilisation, cholecystectomy (gall bladder removal), endometriosis, etc. The simulator even makes it possible simply to practise eye-hand coordination, and to apply stitches internally.

Watch the short video explaining more about the Lapsim simulator.

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