MASITHETHE Counselling Services (formerly Lifeline East London), in partnership with Community Action Against Drugs (CAAD), held a five-day Personal Growth and Leadership skills course for 40 teenagers, ranging from 16 to 21 years of age, at the Khanya Centre in Buffalo Flats last week.
The course was aimed at helping young people to develop themselves by learning how to communicate effectively, build relationships and impart skills to help cope with life’s challenges.
Masithethe counsellor ,Gareth Dart, said the course covered topics that are pertinent to young people such as sexual health, rape, depression, and goal-setting.
“We have young people from different backgrounds because we want them to know how others see the world,” Dart said.
“We divided them into random groups where we taught them about the meaning of confidentiality. That is where they shared amongst each other the stories of their lives in a confined manner.”
Dart said they taught the children about pro-social behaviour, where they are encouraged to give back to the community.
“We also ensured that in their groups they shared with each other their long and short-term goals and we assigned them to make a collage, putting it in black and white so that they can fulfil their aspirations,” he said.
Merrifield College pupil, Jonathan Corbit, 17, said that in the five days that he attended the course, he had learnt a number of things he could implement in their own personal lives.
“Ever since I attended this course, I am able to speak out and express myself in a respectful manner,” said Corbit.
Meanwhile, Witwaterstrand University first-year social work student, Lwanele Potwana, 18, attended the course to observe and gain experience from the professionals.
“The experience at the life- skills course was great because it made me realise there are people out there who are willing to help others without expecting any rewards in return.”
“I am going to take everything I have learned and imply it in my own life; such as leadership skills and knowing my strength and weaknesses,” Potwana said.