As nervous teens burned the midnight oil waiting for their Matric results some hoped to see how many distinctions they achieved while others were merely hoping to pass. There is almost a sense of prestige and honour in seeing your name in the newspaper on that faithful day especially more if you know how hard you had to work to get there.
The Ikamva Youth programme is sorely dedicated to helping underprivilaged children from disadvantaged backgrounds achieve these very goals. Established in Khayelitsha in 2003 the low-cost, high-impact model has been implemented with remarkable results in seven townships in three provinces.
19 year old Tyson Chuma from Ebony Park who is one of the stellar graduates of the class of 2013 says one of his greatest motivations was making his parents proud. The pressure from home and from school pushed to go beyond his best to graduate with 3 distinctions and has hopes to use those distinctions to study medicine and specialize in gynacology. He reckons that hard work isn’t nice but it pays off in the end as was evidant with his results.
19 year old Happy Onamandla was especially thrilled to get his results. He also received 3 distinctions for the most critical subjects he was doing Physics Mathematics and Accounting which he hopes will open many doors for him. He comes from a hard background being the 4th of 7 siblings living in a child-headed household in Mayibuye but has turned his disadvantage into motivation yerning for a better life for himself.
Mosebudi Mapada says she just loves studying and wanted a better future for herself. The study guides from Ikamva really helped her attain her 3 distinctions even though she was hoping for more. She hails Ikamva for the support it has given her “Ikamva has always been there for me, the finacial support they gave us and the motivation was the best”. Her mantra is “pray like no piece of work can make you pass and work like no piece of prayer can make you pass”.
The programme drives social change in South Africa by enabling disadvantaged learners to lift each other out of poverty and into tertiary education and/or employment. Volunteer tutors (many previously beneficiaries of the programme themselves) provide after-school supplementary tutoring, career guidance, mentoring and computer literacy training free of charge to learners from township schools in grades 8 to 12 and the results are satifactory as is evidant with the 3 outstanding students.
One can only hope that more projects of this nature develop over time so that the bridge between previously Model C schools and schools in the more urban areas can be brought down and the level of education can finally be the same.
To learn more check www.ikamvayouth.org