Bongani, a devoted youth worker, will walk a distance of 130KM to raise funds for a youth focused practical life skills program, giving special focus to disabilities and diabetes amongst youth. Over 50% of youth in Manzini (project area) are from either a child-headed household, a vulnerable family setting or are raised by absent parents, resulting in a youth that is void of balanced psychosocial support. The project will be run in 4 schools with about 2450 students, ages 12 - 24.
Swaziland is faced with the challenge of a rising generation of delinquent, sexually immoral, physically unhealthy and directionless youth due to the HIV scourge that has broken down the country's social fibre through high mortality rates, leaving many child-headed households, orphaned, vulnerable, unemployed youth living below the poverty line and at risk of non-communicable diseases. There is dire need for practical life skills programs that will position youth for an improved quality of life.
Students in 4 schools will voluntarily subscribe to the annual program which will run in a club format. Practical life skills lessons will focus on self awareness, sexuality, health and fitness, decision making, time and financial management, leadership, values and entrepreneurship. Program will improve self-worth, optimum achievement and allow participants to draw personal development plans. Application of life skills learnt will be captured through journaling for feedback & accountability.
The program is expected to annually impact about 2000 youth, resulting in them having positive self-esteem, pursuing clearly spelt out personal development plans translating to goal-focused and well-rounded lifestyles. Participants' empowerment will reduce their risk exposure to early sexual debut, HIV infection, drug and substance abuse, non communicable diseases such as diabetes through healthy lifestyles, successful careers and improved response mechanisms to social issues.