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Innovate Durban Co-Lab recognised as an American Corner by U.S. Consulate Durban

Innovate Durban Co-Lab recognised as an American Corner by the U.S. Consulate Durban

Innovate Durban and the U.S. Consulate Durban signed into effect their MoU on Tuesday, October 24 thereby recognising the space at the Innovate Durban Co-Lab in Cato Manor as an official American Corner, one of only two in Kwa-Zulu Natal and eight across South Africa.

American Corners are open-access learning and gathering places around the world that promote interaction – both in-person and virtual – among local audiences and the United States. American Corners deliver compelling programs and activities on a wide range of U.S.-focused themes and topics. These activities include discussion groups, workshops and seminars, meetings with U.S. and local specialists and Digital Video Conferencing events (DVC’s). They also act as a local repository for the use of American-themed literature, internet access, and educational materials. These spaces can be used by communities to connect, exchange ideas, learn 21st century skills, create and innovate together.

The MoU signing ceremony took place at Innovate Durban’s Co-Lab and was attended by the U.S. Consulate Durban staff led by the Consul General Josie Ratcliffe, delegates from the eThekwini Municipality, as well as partners of Innovate Durban such as the Durban Chamber of Commerce & Industry and FNB KwaZulu-Natal. In her address, Aurelia Albert, CEO of Innovate Durban, spoke of how the relationship with the U.S. Consulate began immediately in the aftermath of the devastating riots and civil unrest that took place in Kwa-Zulu Natal in July 2021. She spoke of the magnanimous donation by the Consulate towards the rebuilding and refitting of the Innovate Durban Co-Lab, which was completely destroyed in the looting and how this served as a catalyst for further collaboration between the two organizations. “The relationship that began after those dark days has ultimately culminated in this coveted recognition as an official American Corner,” she said.

The recently appointed Consul General Josie Ratcliffe reiterated the U.S. government’s commitment to continued fostering of the relationship between the U.S. Mission South Africa and the communities they serve. She especially referred to the current and future projects that the Consulate are working on together with Innovate Durban in furthering skills development and training programs for the citizens of the metro.

The public is urged to follow the social media profiles of Innovate Durban and the US Mission South Africa (@USEmbassySA) to stay updated with future news and events due to take place.

Innovate Durban Social Media Handles:

LinkedIn Innovate Durban

For more information on The Innovation Festival, including partnerships or exhibitions contact:

Preston Moodley

Partnership Lead– Innovate Durban

Tel: 087 365 3131 | Email:


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