About MOT

MOT South Africa is a registered and leading Public Benefit and Non-Profit Organisation, specialising in life-skills development among the youth. In 2016, MOT South Africa received accreditation from the Services Seta as a Training Provider (Accreditation number 12129).

In 2017, MOT SA won the Western Cape Department of Social Development’s Ministerial Youth Excellence Silver Award in the category “Creating Youth Leaders” as well as the Mail & Guardian’s “Investing in the Future” Youth Development Award. Both awards recognizes outstanding organisations who have contributed to towards youth development and best practice in their fields.

MOT SA works with the youth in a structured learning environment, teaching young people to make conscious life choices that will enable them to develop to their full potential and to show courage.

The MOT training programmes give young people the strength to manage peer pressure, to believe in themselves and to take responsibility for their own lives and future. MOT focuses strongly on the development of self-confidence, sound values, positive attitude and behaviour, self-leadership and to respect and care for others.

MOT partners with educational institutions, trains their staff and students as MOT Coaches and Young MOTivators, and provides the programme manuals, equipment and monitoring to ensure youth in South Africa become active citizens, leaders and role models.

Read about MOT’s philosophy here.

Introduction to MOT

The name “MOT” was chosen because of its simple strength, and its double meaning: the Norwegian word ‘mot’ (“Moed” in Afrikaans) denotes both the ability to show courage, and the ability to take a stand against something; in this case, the prevalence of violence and drug use.

MOT was introduced to South Africa in 2006 through a partnership between the College of Cape Town and the Haugaland Videregående Skole in Norway, when teachers at the College of Cape Town identified the need for a similar training programme on local soil.  Since then, the Programme Development Team has trained more than 578 MOT presenters at the seven TVET colleges and 18 high schools in the Western Cape to present the programme locally. In May 2008 the Board of MOT South Africa was selected, and on 1 October 2008 the opening of an independent office for MOT South Africa and the appointment of the CEO, heralded a new era in the implementation of the MOT programmes in South Africa and the integration of the MOT philosophy in South African society.

MOT was started by two Norwegian speed skaters, Johann Olav Koss and Atle Vårvik, at the 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway. These two men are passionate about people, and sought, through the establishment of this programme, to strengthen the courage of the youth. On 13 April 1994 they launched a calendar project, entitled “Norske toppidrettsutøvere mot Narkotika”, or “Norwegian top athletes against narcotics”, and on 22 February 1997, during the World Skiing Championships, they took the next step by establishing MOT. The first Norwegian MOT presenters were trained during 1997, and that same year saw the introduction of the MOT programmes into several secondary schools in Norway.

Purpose of MOT South Africa

The challenges faced by young people in our fast-moving world are diverse and complex.  Our youth are faced with daily challenges and difficult situations, poverty, broken families, exposed and living with emotional, physical and substance abuse from a very early age. Often these young people are vulnerable and end up in environments and communities where the situation poses a significant risk for their emotional and physical well-being.  MOT South Africa focuses on the YOUTH and aims to improve the social environment and basic quality of young people’s lives, by teaching them essential life and social skills to effectively deal with their daily challenges.

We achieve immediate, tangible, and visible results in the lives of the youth, while at the same time affecting long-term changes in the classroom and in their communities. Through the MOT programmes, the youth is empowered with courage, resilience and life skills to make the right life choices for them to develop to their full potential and become leaders and positive role models in their communities.

MOT South Africa is a registered Public Benefit Organisation (PBO No. 930 028 579) and Non-profit Organisation (NPO No: 078-690).

MOT Programmes

MOT has become the foundation for life-skills education at Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges in the Western Cape and Eastern Cape and in high schools. The programme targets youth between the ages of 12 and 25 years.  Sustained expansion will see the implementation of the MOT programmes at TVET colleges and high schools throughout South Africa.

The MOT programme for youth between the ages of 12 and 16 years, consists of 15 sessions as part of the robust youth 12 -16 programme and the programme for robust youth between 16 and 25 years, consists of 9 sessions. Both these programmes are presented over a three-year period, which contributes to the successful and sustainable outcomes of these programmes.

At each programme session, the MOT coach (qualified by means of a three-day training course) will facilitate the students’ exploration of a particular life skill and lesson. Each session’s script is intensively researched and tested for positive outcomes, and is regularly updated by the programme development team.

The development of the MOT programmes is based on Albert Bandura’s Social Learning and Self-efficacy Theories, Urie Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Systems Theory, as well as Alan Carr’s six human strengths, of which courage in particular is regarded as pivotal to human well-being, progress and development.

The programmes, which includes the use of practical exercises, role-play, group discussions, thought-provoking questions and general reflection on life, teach young people:

  • How to develop greater personal insight;
  • How to build a platform for positive relationships and to create a positive learning environment in the class;
  • How to care for themselves and each other and to give positive feedback to one another;
  • How to strengthen the ability to communicate, to focus on solutions and how to solve problems;
  • Concepts like positive attitude, values, respect, dignity, integrity, choices, dreams, and believing in the future;
  • Healthy dialogue between parents and youth;
  • How to nurture their own development, happiness and talents;
  • How to improve their self-esteem and develop self-confidence;
  • How to develop the courage to speak out, to make conscious choices and to say “no”;
  • Creative and critical thinking skills.

Apart from being life-skills training programmes, MOT represents a life philosophy that we aspire to inculcate and cultivate within each individual, in institutions, communities and in society.

Read about MOT’s philosophy here.

MOT Norway

MOT Norway has a 20-year track record as a leading non-profit organisation.  MOT Norway gets its funding from the Government and major and minor collaboration partners within the private sector. Another important source of income is the program fee paid by local municipalities and colleges.


MOT Norway’s office

MOT Norway has grown into an organisation with 25 employees, focusing on programme development and implementation, marketing, advertising and promoting the MOT brand. Currently they have 39 brand ambassadors, and in 2015, MOT is presented to more than 65 000 secondary and and upper secondary students to live according to the MOT values; Courage to live, Courage to care and Courage to say no.

MOT Norway’s Board


Back: Therese Bjoerstad Karlsen, Roger Granheim, Vegar Kulset Front: Rune Bratseth (Chairperson), Astrid Loedemel, Marit Breivik

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