In South Africa education is an area that requires maximum attention with a strong focus on schools previously classified as ‘Bantu schools’. South Africa is facing an ever-growing number of high school and university dropouts, unemployed and uneducated young African female youths.
Young girls in South Africa fall prey to child grants as they view this as a means to an end. Child grants are a government initiative to assist impoverished mothers with caring for their offspring. This has had a negative effect on young girls as they view this as their ticket out of their circumstances and would rather opt for child bearing, resulting in the increase of teenage pregnancy, in order to access these grants instead of choosing the route of education with a hope for a brighter future. This is also influenced by the circumstances at home and conditions at schools. Teachers and students alike have become desponded.
Elabo has seen the need to focus skills development and education on girls because of a strong belief that girls need to be taught differently way from the opposite sex. A survey showed that girls do learn differently from boys; for example, in girls the language areas of the brain develop early, while in boys, the visual-spatial areas of the brain develop first. Similarly, girls' brains are quicker to process emotion than boys. Researchers have also found that male and female eyes are organized in different ways (males are more attracted to direction and motion while girls are drawn to textures and colors), and that boys and girls hear differently (girls hear higher frequencies than boys and are more sensitive to sounds). In addition, boys tend to be stimulated by stress and confrontation while girls are more likely to focus and take risks in a less stressful environment.
Girls who are struggling in school are not necessarily defiant, attention-deficient, or unmotivated. They simply may not be getting the attention they deserve. Single-sex schools transform the classroom experience to nurture the special talents and learning styles of young women. In this environment, girls thrive - they excel in sports, mathematics, and science, while furthering their skills in language, arts, and writing.
Elabo will start with weekend camps where girls will get life & computer skills training, education in the form of homework and study skills as well as sporting skills. The purpose is to equip young females with the proper skills to make decisions that will benefit and influence their future positively. Elabo will focus on these three groups, high school going girls, high school and varsity dropouts and unemployed females who have either completed their matric or university studies.
Empowering young African girls for tomorrow to become actors in the development of their schools, communities and nations.
To develop academic excellence for young African girls.To equip young African females with life and leadership skills.To empower young girls in computer literacy and skills programmes that sought to give them opportunities to be leaders in their communities and a stepping-stone into the corporate world. To equip young girls with entrepreneurial skills in order to successfully contribute into the South African economy.To utilise sports such as netball and hockey to empower young girls to stay healthy and away from social ills.To provide physical ability and sport coaching skills for professional level.To develop business and entrepreneurial skills in order to create employment.
Strategy and Activities
The targeted number is based on staff complement, the facility and level of individual concentrated interaction. In 2014 Elabo will work with 120 girls. The 120 girls will be comprised of grades from 8 to 12. The girls are selected based on their outlook on life, sporting involvement at school and academic capabilities. Elabo is not looking for the best performing candidate rather its looking for the best candidate for the programme which is the girl who possesses either all or some of these qualities:
- temporally lost hope,
- has been defeated by her circumstances
- posses potential to succeed despite their situation
- posses academic potential
- posses potential leadership skills even at home or at school on the sports field
- posses sports potential
The process for selecting girls for the Foundation will be from various schools within Soweto, girls will be encouraged to write ‘who am I’ essays. A selection for interviews will be based on these essays. Decisions will be made based on the interview and the essays. Parents will be consulted and required to sign indemnity forms as part of acceptance into the camp.
During the week another set of intakes will make use of the facility, these will be females who have dropped out of school and or those who have completed their matric but are unable to further their studies. The focus will also be to restore hope and to provide mainly entrepreneurial skills with the aim to form co-ops or to study further. This group is concentrated to a smaller number of 20 this way its more individualized thus promising a higher concentrated impact.
Masiphilile Dlamini is the brainchild of Elabo for Hope Foundation. She has years of community development experience, working for various NGO in South Africa, Mozambique and Zimbabwe. She has worked alongside board Directors Roelf Meyer, Thandi Nkiwane and to name a few at Foundation for a Safe South Africa. She has worked with Brystol Meyer Squibb on their rural HIV development programme. She has a passion for helping individuals specifically young female grow and realize their full potential. She is an avid lover of success stories as she is one herself, having been awarded a scholarship at the tender age of 16 to study in the United States of America at Proctor Academy in Boston, Massachusetts. She had the privilege of completing her high school years at Proctor Academy; fuelled by the desire to give back she returned to South Africa to study towards a Bachelor of Social Science at Rhodes University in Grahamstown. She has since delved fully into the field of social entrepreneurship, she strongly believes that South Africa needs more social entrepreneurs and is willing to work hard to get this passion to where it should be to have the impact that it deserves not only in South Africa but in Africa as a whole.