Wednesday, 06 December 2017

CPUT does its part to train marginalised youths

Sanna Kruiper educates guests about the medicinal properties of plants that are grown in the garden tended by herself and her fellow trainees Sanna Kruiper educates guests about the medicinal properties of plants that are grown in the garden tended by herself and her fellow trainees

Trainees of the ||Kabbo Academy based at !Khwa ttu, a San education and culture centre near Yzerfontein, were in high spirits recently when they celebrated their graduation.

Spearheaded by the Research, Innovation and Partnership Department within the Faculty of Informatics and Design, CPUT’s involvement in this training programme extends to workshops in, among others, print-making and digital storytelling.

Trainee Sanna Kuiper (27) attributes her coming out of her shell to the eight months she spent at the ||Kabbo Academy. “I was very self-conscious because my English wasn’t that good. What I’ve learnt here means a lot to me. I’ve enrolled for the tracker academy and will be staying here for another year,” says Sanna, who’s from a community based in the Kalahari in the Northern Cape.

According to Michelle van Wyk from the Research, Innovation and Partnership Department the university was more involved in the Academy this year than before. “The partnership with !Kwa ttu started three years ago with a research project. It has now developed into an equal platform where our students learn from them as much as they [the trainees] learn from our students.”

Michelle goes on to say that the graduation is a culmination of the trainees’ achievement over their eight months of training. “They are able to showcase what they have learnt. Furthermore they can take what they have learnt into their communities, not only in South Africa, but also Namibia and Botswana, where some of the trainees are from.”

The skill Sanna will be teaching other youths in her community is the body stress release techniques she learnt at !Kwa ttu, which is also a hotspot for visitors to the Western Cape. Trainees get exposure to the tourism sector, but more importantly they learn about the San culture and heritage. Sanna aspires to be a tour guide one day.

Shaun Dunn, training manager at !Kwa ttu, sees the Academy as a good vehicle to build young people’s self-esteem. “The experience opens them up to new experiences and they acquire skills that can be used in sectors other than tourism,” he explains.

Visit the !Kwa ttu website for more information about the ||Kabbo Academy.

For more pictures of the graduation go to our Facebook page.

Written by Abigail Calata