IkamvaYouth is a 10 year success story.
“My dream is to one day be the president of the Republic of South Africa, and the secretary-general of the United Nations.”
Lofty goals indeed, but to meet and talk to Rhondashein Ntebaleng Morake is to be acutely aware that the determined nineteen-year-old has an inner conviction which could see her achieve anything in life.
Originally from the township of Kaaifontein in Midrand, Morake has already achieved much. Her mother Cathrane, a domestic worker, made huge sacrifices to give her daughter opportunity and options in life, and, enrolled with IkamvaYouth in Gauteng where Morake has made the most of the academic support and other activities provided by the organisation.
Morake obtained four matric distinctions in 2012 she, and walked off with the academic award at her alma mater, Tsosoloso Ya Afrika High School. She is currently studying towards a Bachelor of Social Science International Relations at the University of Cape Town.
Morake has already broken the mould of women in her family being employed as domestic workers, and has been selected to be part of the Urban Transformers 2012-2013 group by Rethink Leadership.
“I am inspired by ethical leadership, and I speak up in favour of the voiceless,” says matric. She has changed her life and that of her family, and clearly sees great things in her future.
Morake puts it like this: “I aspire to represent the best of Africa… for she is not destitute nor cursed nor relegated to occupying the position of orphan continent. I have a clear vision of where I am going for I have invested in educating myself in preparation to make myself, my community, country and continent a success”.
Success in the throughput of matriculants has been the hallmark of IkamvaYouth in its 10 years of existence. In 2012 there was on overall 94% pass rate among matric learners in IkamvaYouth’s branches in three provinces – a figure which far exceeds the Department of Education pass rate.
Of last year’s cohort, 90% qualified to enter Bachelor or diploma courses, and overall 96% of the group accessed post-school placements (including tertiary education and learnerships)
The organisation will celebrate its 10th birthday in Cape Town on October 3, 2013, at a function at which Minister in the Presidency, Trevor Manuel, will present the keynote address, and IkamvaYouth will launch its 2030 vision, which seeks to upscale its programmes around the country and achieve the goal of ensuring that every child who enrols in Grade 1 reaches matric and passes, and that all learners access a post-school opportunity to ultimately secure a dignified living.
More about IkamvaYouth:
IkamvaYouth equips learners, called Ikamvanites, from disadvantaged communities with the knowledge, skills, networks and resources to access tertiary education and/or employment opportunities once they matriculate. IkamvaYouth aims to increase the collective skill level of the population, to grow the national knowledge base, and to replicate success in more communities.
IkamvaYouth is a non-profit organisation (established in 2003 and formally registered in 2004) with branches in five provinces in South Africa, having added branches in the Eastern Cape and North West Province this year. IkamvaYouth now has branches in Khayelitsha, Nyanga and Masiphumelele in the Western Cape, Ivory Park and Ebony Park in Gauteng, the greater Cato Manor area and Molweni in KwaZulu-Natal, Joza in Grahamstown and Ikageng, Potchesfstroom in the North West Province.
While learners enrol at IkamvaYouth when they are in grades 8, 9, 10 and 11, the programme’s success is ultimately determined by the number of grade 12 learners who access tertiary institutions and/or employment-based learning opportunities when they matriculate.
The IkamvaYouth model draws from a large and growing pool of volunteers made up of students (from nearby universities) and local professionals. The organisation’s sustainability is driven by ex-learners who gain entrance to tertiary institutions and return to tutor. More than half of the volunteers at longer-established branches are ex-learners and over 80% of the Khayelitsha management committee comprises ex-beneficiaries. IkamvaYouth thus provides the additional advantage of allowing ex-IkamvaYouth learners to be agents of