My name is Nkululeko Mabuza from Tzaneen, Limpopo. I am proud to say that I am not only from Limpopo but I am a scout as well. I have been a scout for the past ten years and it has been the greatest time of my life. Keep The Dream196 a local NGO, brought a number of different programs including scouts to Greater Tzaneen in 2003. I started scouts when I was 12 yrs old and there were only 13 of us in the first group. I joined when I was in high school and now I am a professional social worker from the University of the Witwatersrand. When I applied to University I knew very well what I wanted to do and that was Social Work because of how Keep The Dream196 has changed my life. I was a very selfish girl, who didn’t care about how and what other people thought of me and I was very naughty, after joining scouts I stopped being selfish and started thinking about other people. I got an understanding that as young children we are in control of how lives can be when we grow up.
I started being friendly, clean, courteous and thrifty all thanks to the scout laws. I gained respect and acknowledgements from my high school teachers about the way I behaved myself and about how good my grades were. Because of Keep The Dream196 and the positive experiences I had being a scout I knew that I wanted to help other children to have the same opportunity to better their lives regardless of where they are from and their background. I wanted to advocate for children who are being oppressed, to empower young adults that they shouldn’t see themselves as victims of their situations but they should see themselves as victors who can make a difference. I wanted Keep The Dream196 to grow and children’s lives be changed to the best lives that they can have which is finding inner happiness, doing their best and having high self-esteem.
I was employed by Keep The Dream 196 in January of 2013 as a social worker at 21years, 10yrs after joining the program and I am now able to do that, I am able to help vulnerable children, I am able to talk to parents and explain the importance of good parenting skills and the role of scouting to their children and how to help them in knowing how they can engage with their children.
I am a very happy to say that I love what I do and Im happy with my profession. Being a scout has made things easy for me to engage with the public and people I work with. This is why I am very thankful to Keep The Dream 196 and it is important to conserve it because the work they do brightens children’s future.
Because of all the work I have done with Keep The Dream196 as a child and young adult I have been chosen to represent South Africa in Indonesia as a Rover (the 3rd branch of the Scout Movement for young adults aged 18-25yrs). I am so amazed at where Scouts and Keep The Dream196 have taken me. Although I was one of the first to become a scout in 2003, I want to see others have the same opportunities to do what I am doing now, to travel, to represent my country, to be a successful professional to give back to my community and the children of South Africa.