Magazine empowers young women

LAUNCHED on Youth Day last year, Bumb’Ingomso’s youth empowerment magazine, Yakha, is making waves in Buffalo City.

GUIDANCE ON THE WAY UP: Bumb’Ingomso Yakha Magazine communications team, from left, Spokazi Tyiwani, Ath’Enkosi Sopitshi, Rene Hicks, Angela Stewart-Buchanan, Deogracious Ndlovu, Nolonwabo Balele and, front, Xolelwa Pona

The local project funded by the DG Murray Trust, aims to inspire, motivate and support young women in making healthy life choices and reaching their full potential.

The multi-faceted project is implemented throughout the Buffalo City area by the Small Projects Foundation, Beyond Zero, Masimanyane Women’s Support Centre, Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator, DreamWorker, Masibumbane and the Rural Education Access Programme.

“The various organisations needed a way of communicating to the youth that did not require internet access and so the idea of a youth lifestyle magazine was born,” Yakha magazine editor Rene Hicks said.

Since their inception, Bumb’Ingomso, with the help of various organisations in the city, have held various leadership workshops, established youth-friendly clinics, as well as an Opportunity Hub in the city.

The Opportunity Hub is situated at the East London Central Library to help young people navigate the world of work.From writing CVs to gaining information on prospective job opportunities, youngsters can visit the hub for guidance.

Yakha has become Bumb’Ingomso’s main communication tool, informing the youth of not only their own initiatives, but also other organisations and projects aimed at helping them.

The magazine is funded by the DG Murray Trust as part of Bumb’Ingomso’s communication budget and is issued quarterly and distributed freely by the various partnering organisations.

A range of issues, including HIV/Aids, teen pregnancy, gender-based violence and youth unemployment, are covered following a youthful approach.

”The focus of the magazine is not to tell readers what the problems are, but to give them tangible and achievable solutions by showing them there are places they can go to for help,” explained Hicks.

The magazine also celebrates youngsters in and around Buffalo City who are doing great things within their communities despite their circumstances.

This is geared towards empowering the youth to create their own opportunities.The majority of the magazine’s content is reader driven in an effort to give up-and-coming talent a voice.

Photographers and writers are sourced from within Buffalo City.

“There is phenomenal talent here and it is very often never seen. All our content is generated by youngsters living in the city with many of our writers being journalism graduates from Walter Sisulu University.This gives them a way to be published,” said Hicks.

“Its really inspiring to see how many youngsters are doing wonderful things within their communities.Our aim is to share these stories and get the youth to see that people just like them – in the same circumstances – can be successful,” she said.