During the third term of 2015, IkamvaYouth carried out a feedback project, aimed at engaging our alumni community, and giving them the opportunity to participate in the development of the alumni programme going forward. The project included running an online survey which was completed by both 2015 matric learners and alumni (a total of 165), as well as two workshops: the first was in Gauteng on the 17th October 2015 (with 19 matric and alumni participants from Ivory Park and Ebony Park branches), and the other in Cape Town on the 27th November 2015 (with 10 matric and alumni participants from Makhaza and Nyanga branches). Here’s a sneak peak at the results:
The Good News…
- Alumni find our programmes helpful in preparing them for post-matric life
- They are proud advocates of the organisation
- They want to participate in alumni programmes
- They want to stay connected to IY and contribute in-kind as well as financially
- Alumni can’t give back if they’re struggling (financially and otherwise)
- Not all the ideas offered are feasible: So we need to manage expectations
- IY needs to start supporting alumni not in tertiary (e.g. FET, unemployed, upgrading matric)
So, our next steps are to:
- Ensure communication and feedback of key issues between the alumni and IY
- Share opportunities (jobs/funding/study/etc.) via emails and social media
- Host Meet-Ups every term (incorporating needed skills workshops such as CV & Interview skills)
- Source/develop and share guides/booklets with important info (e.g. adjusting to university), and work with branch staff to ensure that these are shared (through workshops & talks) with matric learners
- Pilot a campus support structure in WC
- Promote the individual giving campaign among our alumni who are employed
For a more detailed look at the findings of this project, please click here
to access the full report.
Thank you so much to all the alumni who participated so enthusiastically in the survey and workhops!
As can be seen in our Annual Report 2014
was the year of growth for us: our matric class was 63% bigger than the previous year, we reached over 1,700 learners and we opened our tenth branch. But let’s not forget why we are here, for most of South Africa’s children, the only way out of poverty is through education. Ikamvanites (IkamvaYouth learners) continue to prove that anyone and everyone – irrespective of the school one attends and the socio-economic status of one’s parents can achieve his dreams and escape poverty.
Please read more in our 2014 annual report about the innovation of our model, why we need more Ikamvanites, hear from the Ikamvanites themselves and why our three largest donors of 2014 (Omidyar Network, Amalgamated Beverage Industries and Capitec Foundation) continue to support us.
It is thanks to these donors and many others that we have been able to achieve the results that we have over the last 12 years. South Africa’s future rests on the success of our children. IkamvaYouth is fundraising to reach even more of South Africa’s children in 2016 and needs your support. Please contact me if you would like to discuss supporting IkamvaYouth or find out more about us.
On the 26th of September, we held our Annual General Meeting (AGM) at Chris Hani High School in Makhaza. The event was well attended, with an audience of more than 300 people; among whom were IY staff, learners, volunteers, parents, alumni, board members and representatives of funders and sponsors.
The programme for the AGM consisted of the presentation and approval of the 2014 Audited Financial Statements; approving the appointment of Grant Thornton as our 2015 auditors; the appointment and ratification of 3 new board members, and the presentation of our 2014 Annual report.
“If your dream doesn’t scare you, it’s not big enough”, was the message from one of the outstanding alumni, Sinethemba Kameni, who provided a heart-warming account of his journey with IkamvaYouth. We were encouraged by his and other alumni’s stories; the progress they have made in their lives, and their willingness to come back and inspire the learners who are making their own journey with IkamvaYouth. Zukile Keswa shared his philosophy that says, ‘In life you need to start somewhere’, emphasising that his life’s work is about the impact he is making in his community. This resonated with our findings that 65% of our learners want to come back and become tutors, as our director, Joy Oliver pointed out in her report.
The crowd was entertained by IkamvaYouth learners and tutors who performed moving songs, enthralling dance and inspiring poetry at various intervals during the AGM.
For detailed information on the event, please refer to the minutes accessible the following link: AGM minutes
Please see the attendance register on the following link: AGM attendance register
In January, along with hi-fives and star jumps, the ikamvanites were proud to announce an 82% pass for the class of 2014. Now, after finally gathering in the results for those writing supplementary exams, we’re thrilled to announce an overall 84% pass, with 85% eligible for tertiary institutions (50% bachelor and 34% diploma).
However, while a matric pass is difficult to obtain (especially for those attending schools where more than half of learners drop out before reaching matric), it is just the first of many hurdles that need to be cleared in the race towards a career that can catapult a family out of poverty.
Research has shown (Van der Berg & Broekhuizen, 2013) that unemployment for those with less than 12 years of schooling is 42%, while for matriculants it’s 29%. Those with non-degree tertiary education have an unemployment level of about 16%, while for people with a degree, unemployment is under 5%. The numbers of youth not in education, employment or training (NEETs) have increased over the last few years and currently sit at almost 34% of 15 – 24-year-olds in South Africa.
IkamvaYouth is thrilled to report that 85% of the 2014 matrics ARE in education, employment, or training (and not NEETs). Of the 244 learners who wrote matric in 2014:
49% are in tertiary institutions (30% at university and 19% at colleges)
18% have learnerships or jobs
18% are working to upgrade their matric results
These results are remarkable, especially given the norms and expectations of township youth. Beauty Komone , who attended the Ivory Park branch, says “I grew up in a disadvantaged family of seven where none of my three siblings (who are out of high school) have managed to get into tertiary. Tutoring and other programmes that are run by IkamvaYouth have boosted my performance and the way I perceive life. I am now at University studying information technology (IT)!”
Ikamvanites have chosen to study towards careers that will advance the country’s development. Of those enrolled in tertiary institutions (112 learners), 12% are studying engineering, 14% are studying IT, 18% are studying health sciences, and 34% are studying finance, business or entrepreneurship. We’re encouraged to see that 6% are studying education; our hope is for many more ikamvanites to build their careers by transforming South Africa’s education system.
Katlego Octivious is studying architecture, and Boitumelo Mahladisa is training to become a policeman and keep his community safe. We are particularly proud of Tiyiselani Mpangane, who was really struggling with her academics when she joined the Ebony Park branch in grade 10. After joining IkamvaYouth, her results have shot up remarkably; she achieved 6 distinctions for matric, and is studying actuarial science at UCT.
Most heartwarming and encouraging of all, 65% of the class of 2014 has indicated that they’ll be returning to volunteer as tutors at IkamvaYouth. They will ensure that the next cohorts of learners reach similar heights; and propel the virtuous cycle of ikamvanites paying-it-forward, pulling themselves and each other out of poverty.
We need your help to make the circle bigger: Get involved as a volunteer, or donate!
It’s not often that our volunteer tutors get the opportunity to attend skills workshops that have been arranged exclusively for them. The Shell Volunteer Day, on the 4th of March 2015, was therefore a much appreciated occasion, where employees from the company took time out from their day, to spend with our Ikamvanites, sharing vital skills for entering the job market. This event was organized and made possible by the Charities Aid Foundation Southern Africa (CAF SA). During the workshop, facilitated by Nandi Ngubeni from CAF SA, Ikamvanites gained important knowledge about how to write CVs and cover letters, how to conduct oneself in an interview, and basic professionalism tips such as telephone etiquette.
Here’s what some of them had to say about the experience:
“Thank you very much for a great educational fun filled morning guys. I really enjoyed being around you, learning about you and what you do and hearing different views of the world at work really enjoyed the company and the advice of my team Prudence ,Snazo, and Shakira had lots of fun. I learnt a lot as well and got some tips too. I received good feedback and constructive criticism which will help me when I write my cover letter and CV. I loved the mock interview the most as it kept me on my toes and I got to expand the knowledge I already know. Thank you for taking time out of your busy days to come I received a great deal of motivation.”
“Firstly, I would like to appreciate Shell for the workshop we benefited a lot,we have learnt the tips of how to apply using emails, Sunday Times, employment agencies and how to write a cv and cover letter. And what is expected of us when we go to an interview. They also did mock-interviews with us practically, and learnt that when I am at the interview, I must get straight to the point, and to be myself.”
“I would like to send a special Thank You to the CAF and SHELL people for uniting and spending some quality time with us. I appreciated each and every moment, we had fun with those 30 second cards, i learned a lot especially on how to to a Cover Letter, (An Enormous THANK YOU to the kind and beautiful lady who was helping me with it). Thanks to the IKAMVA YOUTH for having me, Thanks to the lady who organised and Thanks to everyone who made yesterday special.”
“To the CAF and SHELL thank you very much 4 such amazing thing u did for me, I never thought of the importance of a covering letter before. Today I have a better understanding of the important of covering letter and a CV. Guys what you did for me is good, keep it up and pass it to other because a lot of people lose their dream jobs because of the covering letter. To you all of the people from CAF and SHELL I THANK YOU N I SALUTE YOU”
It wasn’t just important skills that were shared on this day, Shell also donated some much needed stationery and learning materials to the Chesterville branch! I would like to take this opportunity to thank CAF SA and Shell for the generous support. It really is through partnerships with dedicated, like-minded organisations and companies that we can make Vision 2030 a reality.
Hear from the Ikamvanites themselves:
Beauty Komone: “I grew up in an Ivory Park Township in a disadvantaged family of seven where no one including my three siblings (who are out of high school) have gotten into tertiary. Tutoring and other programmes that are run by IkamvaYouth have boosted my performance and the way I perceive life. I am now going to University to study IT.”
Benny Matlou: “IkamvaYouth is not just an educational organisation, it is also an organization of personal growth and empowerment, which takes youth through a journey of self-discovery where one gets to build their personal values and learn the importance of respect, loyalty, dedication and self-discipline. IkamvaYouth has truly lifted me off the ground to new and better heights.”
Jabulile Khoza: “IkamvaYouth went the extra mile by organising winter school, educational trips, career guidance events at the convenience of our branch. Another amazing thing that IkamvaYouth did for me, my life and my career was to link me with an amazing mentor who now is still awesome. It is a blessing and a huge privilege to be an Ikamvanite.”
Nokukhanya Mdlalose: “I would like to thank IkamvaYouth for helping me. Because of them I have achieved a bachelor pass and now have a chance to go to university.”
Mapule Molebatsi: “I joined IkamvaYouth in grade 10 and since then my marks have improved. I now have a bachelor pass and I know that if it was not for the help and encouragement of IkamvaYouth, I would have never gotten this far.”
Nereth Vuma: “IkamvaYouth gave me help that I couldn’t get anywhere else; they did it with willingness and encouragement. I am grateful for the help I have received from IkamvaYouth.”
Mrs Mpangane (Mother of Tiyiselani who achieved 7 distinctions): “Thank you IkamvaYouth, I hope you continue to do the same for other children this year, next year and many other years to come.”
Shelton Chadya (tutor): “I feel very, very happy because seeing these learners do better than we did, we can’t celebrate enough. Most of the learners are people that I tutored. Well done guys!”
Cheryl Nzama (IkamvaYouth Staff Member): “We are very excited about the results coming out of IkamvaYouth. The standards have been set and we hope that IkamvaYouth Mamelodi will achieve the same standards to give learners the best possible opportunities and education.”
Felicia Mpande (Grade 12 learner 2014): “IkamvaYouth assisted me greatly by exposing me to career workshops, computer literacy and creative expressions and has been a second home to me. Thank you for all the help you gave me.”