In an effort to inspire young boys to pursue their dreams despite the challenges they may be facing, Indwala Lethu Foundation held an event at which the boys were the centre of attention.
At the two hour dialogue, held at Fezeka High School in Gugulethu last Monday, boys were educated about the importance of respecting women and not getting involved in criminal activities.
Founder and director of the Idwala Lethu Foundation, Reverend Yvonne Daki, said the aim was to urge young boys to be responsible and stay away from crime in order to create a safe and better future.
Ms Daki said raising responsible, respectful boys required the involvement of everyone in the community. This event, she said, was one of the ways in which they facilitate this.
In the past, she said, their programmes had focused on girls, but this time they wanted to shift the spotlight to boys.
She highlighted how young people, who make up the largest segment of the offender population, can avoid the criminal route if only they could receive proper guidance and mentorship.
Among the many issues tackled at the workshop, she said, was gender-based violence.
It is therefore of the utmost importance that they challenge young boys’ thinking about these issues and how they should respond to such matters, said Ms Daki.
“I hope that the boys that who have attended the programme will leave changed and will become better versions of themselves.
“We know that some boys come from broken families and with the kind of work we do, we want these boys to know that it is up to them to change their lives through making informed decisions,” she said.
Ms Daki said she started the foundation more than 10 years ago with the aim of providing a platform for youth to discover themselves and believe that their dreams are valid. She said they run empowerment programmes with different schools in Gugulethu and Khayelitsha.
Ward councillor, Thembinkosi Mjuza, said he was born and bred in Gugulethu and has never lived in any other place. He therefore felt duty-bound to get involved in the development of boys from the community. It was critical that they inspire these young boys to change their behavioural patterns, he said.
He told the boys he is currently pursuing Master’s degree and wanted them to know that nothing is impossible in life.
Attendee, Vuyo Voti, said he had learnt a lot about what is expected from the boy child and that he wold share the information with his peers.
Black Management Forum representative, Sonwabile Xwayi, said such platforms were important as they had huge potential to change the boys’ lives for the better.
He said the forum was open to working with organisations to uplift boys and young men.