IkamvaYouth is speedily setting about garnering the support and partnerships we need to establish more branches across the country. Our results come with the responsibility to replicate, and while our high impact model is also low cost, scale is nevertheless expensive. 

IkamvaYouth is also very fortunate to be supported by visionary donors who’re providing the means we need to grow in the face of the overwhelming need for our services. However, in looking far forward into the future of our organisation, we’re planning to create an income stream that is directly related to our key assets: the wonderful ikamvanites. Our first step in this direction was a brainstorming workshop held in April last year, facilitated by Freda Gray.

Now, with generous support from the Bertha Foundation, IkamvaYouth is working with Mindstir, an innovation company, to develop a social enterprise who’s aims align with  the organisation’s key mission of enabling ikamvanites to access post-school opportunities, which would also generate profits, to be donated to IY. 

The current thinking is around linking BBBEE Skills development contributions to student loans, bursary programmes, learnerships and internships. Business struggles to find the right students to support: they mostly recruit students via campus exhibitions/ advertisements but receive loads of applications and it is costly to sift through them, get aptitude tests done and eventually when they select the students they will sponsor, they are not sure if the relationship will work. Businesses have to spend money on “institutional based theoretical instruction” as it contributes to the Skills Development points they can earn to make up their BBBEE score.

As IkamvaYouth works closely with committed learners who prove themselves over many years, the organisation can provide these businesses with an attitude indication and develop a way to match students with corporates.

One potential solution is to provide a service to corporates similar to that where foundations manage CSI spend for companies, but focused on bursaries and student loans. Corporates would pay us a small management fee and this enterprise takes the pain and cost of recruiting students as well as reduced risk that these learners will drop out of tertiary.

On 3rd February, Freda Gray and Anneke de Bod facilitated a scoping session where ikamvanites and key supporters collectively brainstormed the concept and set the scope for the pre-feasibiliy study. Ikamvanites were lucky to be joined by IY Chair and MD of TSiBA education, Leigh Meinert; Amrik Cooper from ikapadata; Prof Darren Lorton, Executive Dean of Applied Sciences at DUT; Charles Ainslee from the Learning Trust ; Lolita Barends from Capitec and Susan Godlonton (IY board member and PhD fellow at the University of Michigan); each of whom contribute significantly to supporting and growing IY. 

The scope for the pre-feasibility was set, and interviews are currently underway. IkamvaYouth is grateful to all those who’re giving their time to participate, and we’re looking forward to finding out whether our ideas have wheels to hit the road towards self-sustainability.