Spw 2014 Umlazi
Saturday and Sunday the 29th and 30th of March saw Umlazi host it’s second ever Strategic planning weekend. The Branch staff was joined by the District coordinator, 4 learner reps and 20 volunteers for the weekend.
Volunteers and Learners reps at SPW
Saturday kicked off with a fun ice-breaker to get everyones blood and minds going. Straight from there we went into the expectations and ground rules for the weekend for everyone to follow.
It was not long before we had covered the timeline of the organisation and got into the more strategic work we had set out to do on the weekend.
Volunteers and learners in groups during Values discussion
The team broke off into 5 groups and each group discussed one of the 5 values of IkamvaYouth. Time was spent in the group to discuss and following that, we then discussed the values as a big group. Once we all finished the values discussion we moved on to reflect on the previous year.
We looked at some of the successes that the branch celebrated and some the challenges that we faced as a branch in the year 2013.
What followed was an introduction to each of the 5 portfolios that IkamvaYouth offers to learners. During the time the groups discussed what the aim of each portfolio is, what were the challenges and successes in 2013 and also the roles of branch com at the branch. After that we had a presentation from each group on what they had discussed. The last part of the day were nominations for the portfolio heads voting to take place on day 2.
Circle of trust
Day 2 began with the branch coordinator giving feedback on portfolio activities from 2013. What the targets were and which were met which were not, also why some of the targets were not met. A brief budget talk was also on the cards before the team split into groups once again to do planning for 2014 targets. Once the targets were done, the groups then presented to us what each portfolio had come up with for the year.
Phumla Nyaba (Head of Life Skills and health)
This was the last part of the day. The day came to a close after we had all agreed to discuss any further matters at the next branch com meeting to be held at the branch. A big thank you to everyone who was able to attend the SPW.
An amazing and inspiring weekend Makhaza branch had. It was an excellent opportunity for volunteers, tutors and learner reps to participate in core operational planning and goal setting for the year 2014. . Present were more than 30 participants from different grades and tutors and they all had a chance to discuss the decision making, planning and electing the branch committee.
On Friday we looked back from the year 2013. The morning started off with an introduction and the group explaining what their expectations of the weekend are, we then discussed what happened in 2013 and then we ended with looking at what Makhaza branch is doing well, what challenges we are facing, what IkamvaYouth Makhaza branch is offering learners and the community and what we can do to improve the programme.
On Saturday the election took place and everyone had a chance to vote for the different nominees. The nomination and election process were very democratic and the nominees had to explain to the group why they were best suited for the different portfolios. The different portfolios were Tutoring, Volunteer Coordination, Career Guidance, Media, Image and Expression, Khan Academy and Computer Literacy, Health and Life Skills, Mentoring and Alumni. Read more about it: makhaza_strategic_planning_2014.pdf
All the head of different portfolio had the chance to discuss the key issues and solutions for each portfolio. An action plan was drafted for each portfolio and when the goals should be reached and by whom. Mandisi Gladile, a tutor who is serving for the second time in Makhaza branch committee says, “The weekend was really informative and made me realise the value IkamvaYouth adds not only to the learners but also the community and I feel really inspired for the things that we have planned for 2014.”
Athandile, a grade 9 learner, says that “I have learnt that you don’t have to hold back any ideas or views that you have, you must voice them out. I have taken away with me the spirit of working together as a team, through that spirit, nothing can bring IkamvaYouth down.”
On the 15th and 16th March 2014, Masi hosted its annual SPW. Duing this weekend 20 learners, tutors and staff members came together to plan the year ahead taking into consideration all that has happened at the branch and all the hurdles that we must still overcome. Shuvai Finos (Nyanga Branch Coordinator) and Siphelele Madabula (Nyanga Branch Assistant) facilitated and ran the SPW.
The first part of the weekend was to trace the steps of the branch via a timeline that was done by the learners in collaboration with the tutors. Thereafter, the various challenges and burning issues of the branch were tabled out with the sole purpose of finding the more sustainable and realistic solutions going forward. After a very enlightening day of brain power and fun, the first day of SPW was done.
Day two began with was became the highlight of the weekend, the election of a new Branch Comm. It was interesting to see just how much potential in vested within each Masinite as they all stood and offered themselves to serve the Branch and be a beackon of hope in the community. After the excitement, it was back to work for us all. At this point, the Masinites had to lay out the year plan for the branch, ensuring that it was realistic and speacific. After a very tiring two days, SPW was done and all the attendees agreed that although they realised that there is still a lot of work that needs to be done, they were all very excited to see the branch grow. In the masi_spwreport_2014.pdf a more detailed report of all that happened during the weekend and all the great work that is to be done at the branch is provided. Please take some time to read through it and then watch this space. To infinity and beyond!
It was David and Goliath, except for the differences in the endings of the stories, the Afrobot competition organised by SciFest Africa between Ikamvanites, Galaxy – an independent engineering team, Magnete from Graeme College(former private school) and Ntsika High School lived up to the biblical metaphor. Little did we know, that Magnete and Galaxy have had 3 and 4 years respectively to prepare and practice for this taurnament while Ikamvanites had only 3 days to prepare.
The preparation stages were shaky, as expected under the circumstances. On Day 2 of preparation, Ikamvanites demonstrated tremendously high spirit and unity of purpose as they put together their robots. A spirit of team work inspired by IY’s values of “teamwork and peer-to-peer support” became the useful tool as frustration due to pressure grew in other teams.
By 5pm on Friday, Ikamvanites were testing their robots and helping each other in preparation for the next morning’s show down. The teams had to build remote controlled robots to pick up or push 6 cans from one place to a designated spot in a space of 90 seconds.
Both Ikamvanites’ teams demolished Ntsika High School, added Graeme College among the casualties and went on to meet in the finals of their category.
Exhilarating as the finals of the pushers were, the fact that both teams were Ikamavanites added a bit of sourness to it. The winning team in the Pushers final went on to meet the winning team in the Lifters category, Galaxy. Though Galaxy took 4 years to build their robot, they were certainly given a run for their money by Ikamvanites which saw them winning by a small margin of just 2 points.
The creativity, courage, determination and commitment shown by Ikamvanites through the preparation stages of the taurnament and the tremendous discipline demonstrated during the actual competition saw us earning an early invitation to the taurnament due to take place in March 2015. Indeed, Ikamva Lisezandleni Zethu!
The sky is not the limit for Khayelitsha astrophysicists
The matric class of 2013 was IkamvaYouth’s 9th and by far our largest ever, with over 150 Ikamvanites. These dedicated young men and women come from 7 different townships in 3 provinces, and they have overcome extraordinary adversity to reach and pass matric. From extreme poverty to gang violence, disintegrating families to drug and alcohol abuse, townships like Nyanga and Umlazi, the places the Ikamvanites call home, struggle with terrible social problems.
Despite those problems, the Ikamvanites of 2013 not only achieved an 89% matric pass rate, but 73% of have already gone on to access the post-school opportunities they need to set them on the path to earning a dignified living.
Even more impressively, 46% of the matriculants accessed either Universities or Universities of Technology – proving that where you come from is no barrier to where you can get to in life. Ikamvanites are entering fields of study from Chemical Engineering to Law, Accounting to Education, Information Technology to Nursing. A record 10 Ikamvanites began their first year at the prestigious University of Cape Town this year, including top Makhaza students Sipho Ngqayimbana and Abongile Jojozi, who are both studying Astrophysics. Perhaps the next Stephen Hawking will be from Khayelitsha!
Overall, 63% of the Ikamvanites who passed matric in 2013 accessed some form of tertiary studies, including at FETs and private colleges. A further 8% accessed learnerships, and 10% have returned to school to supplement or upgrade their matric marks. We will continue to work with those Ikamvanites who have not yet found a post-school opportunity, and help set them, too, on the path to a dignified living.
IkamvaYouth wishes to thank our committed partners and sponsors for all the support they’ve given us and the brilliant Ikamvanites of 2013.
We would also like to call on any other interested organisations or individuals who can partner with us to help place the class of 2014, and work towards our Vision 2030 for South Africa. We would especially like to hear from bursary providers and organisations able to provide learnerships, internships and apprenticeships.