I sit on the doorstep on my room in Johannesburg South Africa, with a cup of some fresh Rooibos tea. It’s cold, but the cup of tea and the two jackets that I am wearing are keeping me warm. This is not a usual night for me, there is something on my mind, I have unanswered questions and I am trying to find solutions for the crisis in my life.
I didn’t plan to be here, I did not see my life becoming as it has. On the contrary, I wanted to travel the continent, empowering my fellow African brothers and sisters. I wanted to be teaching business seminars in Zimbabwe, in Zambia, in Kenya. I never envisioned myself living in a one-room, struggling to raise enough money to pay rent and buy food.
Where did I go wrong? But I am not the only one, there are thousands of Zimbabweans all over South Africa, who have left their country of birth in search for greener pastures. We all have since discovered that the grass that seemed greener from Zimbabwe is actually growing on a sewage leak!
Its been almost a year since I left home, and I have been through some interesting situations – from living in a barber shop, to sleeping in the park and now I have a one-room…that’s a huge achievement for someone in my shoes.
But there is still hope, not only for me but for every other African brother and sister. The hope does not lie in aid, per se, but it really lies in the empowerment of the African youth. These are the future leaders, the future business gurus.
I am getting a vision, a bright image of the future, a generation of Africans who will not only change their lives, but the lives of their fellow brothers and sisters. They say change is the only constant in life, change has to come to Africa, positive change.
Change only comes, however, when new knowledge is received. It’s a new perception of the world that can bring positive change to Africa. It’s a different value system, not changing the culture, but changing the values on which we build our lives. It’s the values that govern us, it’s the values that affect what we do and who we become. In the midst of negativity and corruption, positive change is possible. They say when the student is ready, the teacher appears; Africa is ready for new teachers. Teachers who will not be afraid to teach, Leaders who will not be afraid to lead and the students will not be afraid to learn.
Instead of giving us fish, we now need to learn how to fish and then maybe we can even own the fishpond where everyone fishes. Africa’s future lies in all the youth, myself included. It breaks my heart to see young people engage in self-destructive habits; like smoking at a young age, drinking alcohol from a young age, mugging people, stealing… What is the cause of all this? Remember, change can only come when new knowledge is received.
There is hope for Africa, when the young generation is empowered. These future leaders need to be taught, we need to be taught. They say success leaves clues, now is the time for us to learn the clues from those who have gone before us and achieved great things for humanity.
It’s no longer about me, but it’s now up to me. If I can impact just one life of my fellow Africans, I know they will go on to impact their society and that in the end we will have a better Africa.