My name is Bongani Patrick Ndlovu, a 27-year-old from Soshanguve, Pretoria. Being unable to find a job and dropping out of university and college, I found myself having stress, anxiety and facing depression. I then decided to move to Johannesburg to look for job or study opportunities. But instead I found myself sleeping on the streets and eating in bins. Still, I never gave up and had hope. Then I met a guy who told me about Afrika Tikkun. I went to them, they gave me the information and I applied.
It’s now been two months since I’ve been with Afrika Tikkun and with help from their social workers, I managed to go back home and resolve some of the issues I had there. Eventually I was transferred to Afrika Tikkun’s Wings of Life Centre. I didn’t know what to expect apart from what I’d been told when I applied. However, from day one, from the security to the facilitators, I’ve been made to feel at home. The facilitators made things easier and met with other young people with different situations. From then, my life took a huge turn. The first thing I learned was I don’t have to run around looking for opportunities but instead must create opportunities for myself. I have gained so much knowledge about personal development, community issues and work related matters, and opened my mind to new ways of thinking about and seeing life. That’s how the training has helped me. I’ve been using my talents, and been working on my abilities, as well as on the emotional and physical aspects of my life. I’ve managed to come with business plans and create more opportunities for myself. I would like to be part and contribute to Afrika Tikkun’s Vision and goal of helping young South Africans Since the lockdown started, I have been able to put in motion what I have been learning by planning my day, doing exercises, reflecting on my needs and wants, and being aware of my surroundings and community.
I’m increasing my knowledge by watching news, reading books and participating in online lessons provided by our facilitators. Every day is a new day and I start planning for the next day. The lockdown has provided much-needed rest and when I wake up every day, I check up on my classmates and focus on staying safe and investing in my capabilities. I can’t wait for the lockdown to be over so I can start practicing what I’ve been taught and telling people how Afrika Tikkun changed my life.
Bongani Patrick Ndlovu