Winter 2015: Discovering my purpose

This winter, many of our teenagers participated in our Teenagers Conventions organised as part of Module 2 “My Future, My Responsibility” programme. These conventions aim at increasing our teens’ self-esteem, and improving their public and presentation skills. They are also a great platform for them to meet others young people facing similar life circumstances.

From the 29th of June to the 1st of July 2015, in cold weather conditions, 77 adolescents from Lenyenye and Mangweni met at the Elandskloof Trout Farm in Dullstroom. This second Convention of the year was financed by the Solidarity Accor Foundation and the Lewis Group. Then from the 8th to 10th of August, Children of the Dawn organised its biggest convention ever held. Gathering the communities of Mathabatha, Ermelo and Bushbuckridge at Bayete Adventures Camp near Modimolle (Limpopo), this event aggregated 145 participants in total.

During both conventions, our teenagers took part in many activities on the theme “Discovering my purpose”:

  • Presentation of poems and songs prepared on the proposed topic,
  • 24 career guidance sessions during which groups of teens presented the results of their research on a given profession and answered their comrades’ questions,
  • Debate on teenage pregnancy,
  • Spelling Bees,
  • Team-building and outdoor activities such as shelter or raft building, obstacles course, tug of war, reflection and creativity games, hiking…

Through the Bayete Camp, we realized that it is more productive to work with a limited number of participants. The Dullstroom Camp represented the perfect size. The good attitude of teens made the conventions really interesting and productive. At the end of both camps, most of our participants considered that what they learnt will help them a lot in their future life. Nelsiwe, 18, talked about a new motivation after listening to the experience of tertiary students’ at Dullstroom. As for Christina, 17, she found a new purpose at Bayete Camp and would like to become a journalist.

Children of the Dawn’s teenage conventions are fruitful. Our teens can learn new tools to reflect and construct a positive future. We are very grateful to our donors and sponsors who make it possible for our teens to enjoy a time-out from their heavy routine and find a sense of purpose in their life.