Before I joined KTD196 I lived with my mum, my aunt, my granny and my siblings. I was a very naughty boy and was always disobedient and jumping out of home to go to the streets with my friends. We would always go to the shabeens and drink the beer left in the bottles behind the taverns, also pick up stompies of cigarettes and smoke them. We would come home early in the morning or in the middle of the night then go to school and fall asleep.
One day my aunt Emily said she needed me to help her deliver some food parcels to some poor people in my village and I needed to carry the food packages. My heart broke with what I saw. People that were starving and eating grass and dirt to fill their stomachs, I realised what I was doing was just rubbish. I wanted to help these people especially the children. I didn’t want to be a bad boy any longer.
My aunt was trained to do scouts and I went along to help her. I was 13yrs old. I didn’t understand it well but grew to love it. If I speak of My Home it has always been keep the dream196. Where should I start, well one great mine giant Patrice Motsepe Once said "I've come to understand that what we want in life is the greatest indication of who we really are". Why this quote? As a Scout my honour has always been doing my best, to serve my purpose, my family, my country and reflect true leadership in our generation.
When I it was Dec when I was 15yrs my aunt died, she was the bread winner for the family.
Then in Jan, the next month, my mum died. This left my granny, me and my two siblings and no money.
Through KTD196 help we registered for 3 orphan grants and we were successful. Then as the head of the household I was responsible to see that everything worked well. My granny wasn’t well, so employed a carer to look after my granny and to come every day to do the washing, cooking and cleaning for us. I would take my siblings to school and then I would go to school as well. It was hard but through Gods grace and KTD196 I made it. We made it.
I remember when Mom Lou said she was going to take the Scout Group away from me, because I was now the leader. I begged her not to because it was the only thing I did just for me. I would die if that died as well. I needed the Scouts program. It has taught me so much which I used every day back then to lead my family. If I've mentioned the word Mom in the past 10 years since my late Mom passed on, it was Louise Batty and u are a great Mom!
Mom Lou would check to see everything was working well at home, she would make sure my grades weren’t slipping and that Scouts was working well. Everyone at KTD196 became my mother and would look after me. The support and dedication from Keep the Dream196 and its staff has always been amazing.
I remember my first week of college, I was with Andrew and Sheila (supporters and donors of KTD196) we were watching some of the Mechanical engineering projects Andrew often worked on during his career. Little did I know Andrew was building my desire for Mechanical engineering and with their support, scouts values and training from KTD196, I toiled hard and reflected leadership skills, team work and a focus that has always bring a question to my foremen “Who trained this young Man" and deep within I always say I'm a true son of Keep The Dream196 and a Scout.
A few years back I spoke as an Orphan scout, then as a college student and now due to the support of Keep the Dream196 and the great Elizabeth (Program Manager of KTD196), The Tanners, the Field Officers who became my moms and Mon Lou, I speak as a qualified artisan (fitter and turner) of Keep the Dream196.