Sikelelwa is 16 years old. She has always struggled with her home situation; her mother lives in Durban and her father left the family when Siki was a child. She has lived with her aunt in Masi and her cousin who is also in the programme. A feeling of abandonment and not belonging coupled with resentment and anger has had a detrimental affect on her academic work as well as her personal development. However, she continues to show an admirable dedication and determination.
She has participated in IkamvaYouth’s tutoring programme at Masi Library since its inception, is an active member of the Branch Committee, and was one of the learners who completed the Philosophy Course. The impact upon her personal development has been profound; making dramatic progress in her language, communication, listening and academic skills. The Careers Indaba has been a highlight of her winter holidays for the past 2 years; ‘it brought youth together, challenged my confidence and taught me so much to think about – it has shown me the light’. The Indaba also gave her access to activities to satisfy her creative side that is often stifled by her situation.
Siki has a unique personality, which evoked bullying in her younger years and knocked her self-confidence. Through her participation in IkamvaYouth she has learned that she can be her and achieve for herself:
‘I work hard for myself and I want to get to a new height. I’ve learnt that when I want to achieve something I must do it for no one but myself’
Siki is a perfect example of how through IkamvaYouth’s academic and personal support, learners can flourish and believe in their futures. Furthermore it shows how role models are created through the programme. Siki has an aptitude for mathematics and accounting, but her personal goal is to be involved in PR and marketing – a career well suited to her special energy!