IkamvaYouth had the pleasure of presenting at the Scaleshift event last week. The IkamvaYouth team were down in Cape Town and the gang ascended on the Graduate School of Business (GSB) with the hope of picking some fresh brains. The first session in 2014 took place on Tuesday 21st January

The session produced some insightful conversations. One that struck me was around the importance of relationships in the IkamvaYouth model. It is known that the stronger the relationship a learner has with a tutor the more likely they are to be committed and therefore to perform better academically. One of the strategic plans to scale is to leverage technology for an online tutoring model. The challenge of maintaining the necessary supportive relationships through this online model is a very real one.

The importance of love, care and belonging is an ingredient of the model that cannot be overlooked. Therefore an online tutoring solution or the use of mobile technology to reach more remote areas must not lose sight of the social relationships that hold a branch together. Something to think about as we design the online tutoring pilot!

Another interesting discussion was around the question, “What are we doing that is revolutionary?” A question that is difficult to ask yourself, but when asked by others, it generated some interesting ideas about systemic change.  

It was suggested that IkamvaYouth and other innovative organisations need to develop their ability to export the progressive principles and practices that produce impact, rather than replicate a rigid model in its entirety. The flexibility of the non-profit sector to act in, and around existing structures and systems is essential to find large-scale and sustainable solutions for South Africa.

IkamvaYouth’s strategy for growth speaks to this necessity, and projects have been designed/being designed in such a way that requires collaboration within and across sectors. Working together is the only way that Vision 2030 is possible.

Thank you to those who attended and helped us to think through some complex problems as a larger and more diverse group.

For more information on IkamvaYouth’s plans for growth or anything raised in this blog contact zoe@ikamvayouth.org.

To find out more about Scaleshift email warren.nilsson@gsb.uct.ac.za.