As a young driven woman from one of the poverty-stricken areas in Limpopo, Keep The Dream196 and Scouts has been a rescue to me. I am Engel, a 21-year-old girl doing her 3rd year in BA in Psychology at the University of Johannesburg. Life was never simple as we struggled with the slightest basic needs such as food, water and electricity. I come from a place where I am surrounded by young people, mainly teenagers, who often engage in risky behaviours such as abusing harmful substances like drugs, alcohol, and cigarettes. Teenage pregnancies are also high, as is dropping out of school. When I met Charmaine in my first year (2019) of university. Charmaine (who you have read about before on GlobalGiving) told me how being a KTD196 changed her life. She was also from an incredibly poor Limpopo area and showed me all the activities and work she had done, I became interested and joined the Limpopo team. As a student, it has been an interesting journey being part of the Scout Movement because we meet different people and the activities keep you busy and focused. As much as I’m far from home, those values and morals are practiced each and every day.
Our Rover Crew is like a tiny family. We have a WhatsApp group for the Limpopo Rovers where we interact and share everything. As a Rover, I am determined to teach others what I have been taught such as taking care of the environment, which leads to taking care of oneself overall, learning developmental skills such as problem-solving, anger management etc., and also having fun in the form of educational adventures or games which teaches you how to love, care, embrace and spread peace amongst others. Change does not require one to be rich or poor, it starts inside What we learn as Scouts and Rovers becomes a good habit. I would love others to join because there are many activities that one can do to change the world and it starts with me. Being in Scouting has shown me the importance of education, how sending positive messages can give hope to the hopeless. Change does not require one to be rich or poor, it starts inside and I always get excited whenever I have to do something good for someone because that is what I have been taught, it’s not a burden but a joyful ride.
I can proudly say that being part of the Keep The Dream196 family has changed my life. Everybody is so welcoming and friendly, it does not matter which background, race, language, or ethnic group you belong to. You just blend in so quickly and it is so amazing. I am now driven, I cannot walk past a paper without picking it up, I cannot pass an elder without greeting or helping out where I can in the community whenever I am free. It is those little things that count. I am very assertive and can now boldly resist peer pressure which has boosted my self-esteem and self-confidence. Whenever I get a chance, I always tell people “Be kind to the world, be kind to the environment, be kind to yourself and it will always come back to you”. What excites me, even more, is that we are breeding responsible adults. I am bringing change to my community with the little acts of kindness that I practice every day and that is what people see in me. Thank you for supporting Keep The Dream196, you are helping us in so many ways. God bless you. Engel