Kim Smith resides in Cape Town, South Africa and is pursuing a Masters degree in Developmental Studies. With her university, Kim has had the opportunity to travel extensively and has begun a global dialogue that has further solidified her dedication to community development. “The ideas and views of friends from all over the world further ignited my passion for wanting to be an instrument of change.”
Kim works with various non-profitable projects in townships such as Khayelitsha and Bonteheuwel in Cape Town addressing the changes her country faces as a means to promote collaboration and cooperation with one another in an effort to achieve great things.
“I am an ordinary person from a small community in Cape Town, but my ability to dream and to dream big has never failed me.”
Kim was born and raised in Cape Town, South Africa. It was when she enrolled at the University of the Western Cape to pursue a Bachelor of Arts degree in social sciences that she discovered her passion for social sciences and community development. Through her on-campus membership with the Golden Key International Society, an honorary society for academic achievers, Kim participated in community projects and later went on to become president of her chapter. The organization’s outreach projects led Kim to the United States as a representative of her university and it was on that trip that she “realized the importance and power of dialogue and interaction with people from different backgrounds.” It was a humbling and engaging experience that led Kim to further commit herself to playing a role in her country’s changing environment.
In 2007 Kim applied for the Abe Bailey travel bursary and was awarded the opportunity to join sixteen other students on a three-week trip to the UK. The journey was one that changed Kim’s life. “We spent three weeks deliberating on issues that South Africa is faced with and it took us to be outside South Africa to really appreciate the diversity and richness of our country. It was not an easy journey, but I made long-lasting friendships and discovered and explored a spiritual side of me that I never knew existed.” Kim returned to South Africa knowing, emphatically, that change and transformation was something she wanted to be instrumental in. She wanted to make a difference.
In 2008, Kim was awarded the Mandela Rhodes Scholarship, where she was fortunate to meet ex-president Nelson Mandela and was part of a group of 23 amazing people who shared Kim’s hopes and dreams for South Africa. The experience was both remarkable and challenging because participants were forced to grapple with their own weaknesses and faults. “Looking back, I realize that the process was necessary for me to be where I am today. I have grown and developed in so many ways and am more determined than ever to make my mark in this country.”
Kim spent the first half of 2009 in Sweden participating in a course on Human Rights and Democracy in a global era.
Kim holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in social sciences, a Bachelor of Commerce degree in Industrial Psychology (Honors) and is currently pursuing a Masters degree in Development Studies as a DAAD scholar at the University of the Western Cape.
Kim was born in 1985 and lives in Cape Town, South Africa.