About Mr. Dane
A community builder & disruptive innovator.
Dane Esethu is the founder of Compassion Camps, and Inspyre Education.
He has taught 430+ workshops in schools centered about social and emotional learning (SEL);
teaching kids to love themselves and rekindle their love for learning. He has also facilitated numerous workshops for adults, about audience engagement, leadership, and trauma awareness.
A strong passion for empowering community and bringing people together led Dane to pursue a Peace Studies major focusing on Conflict Theories, Mediation, and Adolescent Development at Nelson Mandela University. He also completed a Psychological First Aid Certification from St. Mary’s in Minneapolis, MN, and a Trauma Resilience and Awareness Certificate from East Mennonite University. Now he organizes Compassion Camps full-time to empower leadership centered around compassion.
Dane's journey into the heart began in high school when he realized he was sitting with all the jocks that made fun of the students with special needs as well as everyone else. This did not sit right with him, especially having an older sister with a mental disability. On that day, he vowed he would not surround himself with individuals whose intentions were to bring down others. This was also the day vow to revolutionize education, not knowing at the time this was the birth of Connection-Based Education. He was not stimulated, textbooks were the focus of lessons, and he found that connection and engagement were desperately needed.
As part of his studies, he worked diligently with street children at Sinethemba Children’s Center every day for seven months. For the first three months, he did not think anyone spoke English (ignorant American) until one student said “Mr. Dan, we understand you!” That was one of the first moments he truly understood the power of connection and what it takes to achieve harmony in a classroom. His calling to create programs for social innovation in schools became much deeper after being asked to take the first Nelson Mandela Leadership training. We all have a champion within, self-awareness, empathy, outro-spection, and a belief to achieve excellence. That is the secret sauce for everyone.
Dane feels blessed to have received the lessons that he have his life. The best part about being an educator is there are new lessons every single day. He is sincerely humbled to be able to serve so many youth around the world. He believes together we can all set a new standard for our youth on what they deserve. He pledges my heart to the students. They are our the hope of our future.
Dane looks forward to connecting with you through The Connect community video call, and through Compassion Camps!