Faith joined Lalela as a grade 10 student at Silikamva High in Imizamo Yethu. Always a top achiever, at the end of 2020 she graduated with flying colours, armfuls of medals and certificates, and the prestigious title of Silikamva Valedictorian. Hailing from Zimbabwe, Faith’s dreams were severely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic as she was not able to return home to obtain her study permit. Ever the optimist, she intended to make the most of her unplanned gap year to better prepare for her future.
Tell us more about yourself?
People say I’m a “people person”. I can relate to almost everyone, and I like to bring out the best in people. I’m a good listener and my friends say I’m a good friend!
I’m very passionate about nature; I feel like I’m an activist especially with global warming and sea animals. As an individual, I’m helping by reducing my plastic usage and rather using recyclable things. My other hobbies are reading books, or writing poems, but only once in a while when I get inspired.
Describe your Lalela journey?
My time with Lalela was quite amazing. I started in 2018 as a Grade 10 student. I’m not the best artist in the world but I got to know that art is not about being perfect or being talented.
I like to think outside the box, and Lalela gives you the opportunity to be creative in a different way – simply being creative without having to follow rules. It helped me to have confidence in myself. Lalela also taught me that teamwork makes dreamwork, you need team mates; sometimes you can’t do everything on your own.
Lalela was a safe space after school, like a breath of fresh air. In a place like Imizamo Yethu, I feel like Lalela helps protect students from things happening in the community. When you get out of school you still have a lot of energy, but after Lalela you get home and sleep or do your homework; it’s too late for you to go out and get influenced by people.
What did you enjoy the most about the workshops?
Meditating. From the first time we had to meditate, it was a turning point for me. You feel very refreshed afterwards.
How did Covid-19 impact you?
It really impacted me in a negative way. I couldn’t go back to Zimbabwe to get my study permit, so was not able to study this year. The Lalela facilitators really helped to keep me motivated, they were there for me. One thing that makes you feel more stressed is feeling alone, but I had a good and strong support system.
What do your future plans look like?
I would like to study to become an environment specialist. I am so passionate about conservation and preserving nature for future generations to come. I’m hoping to get my diploma at Stellenbosch university.