Despite all odds

“To me forgiving yourself is the hardest thing anyone could do and I found that very inspiring.”

In the beginning Amahle was not interested in YWOMB. She says she was looking to audition for the choir. Later on, towards the end of that week she met our YWOMB team. “I never thought that in my life, I would meet people who are so strong, kind and loving. I learned to speak out about my problems,” is what she said when asked about her experience with YWOMB.

She continued by saying that YWOMB had made her understand that being vulnerable and sensitive is not being weak-minded, it’s the strongest anyone can be and that she always tries to educate her peers about, no matter how weird or hard it is. She then added that one individual can successfully educate others; which is her goal. Ultimately, this is what makes her a driver of change; her devotion to her peers and YWOMB and its growth.

What changed in Amahle’s life, as previously mentioned, is her ability to be vulnerable. She was always afraid of showing her more sensitive emotions because she thought it would give the people around her ammunition and the ability to cause harm to her. But ever since she began her journey with YWOMB, she has been given the tools to go about dealing with her emotions and life in general, in turn she no longer sees her vulnerability as a bad thing.

One particular member of the YWOMB team made an impact on Amahle. “She was going through a lot of problems and her heart and body was hurting. She told me that as hard as it was, she had to forgive herself for her illness. To me forgiving yourself is the hardest thing anyone could do and I found that very inspiring,” is what Amahle revealed when asked about this particular member of the YWOMB team, Ayanda.

Amahle realised that not everything that she goes through is the end of the world. Most people, like Ayanda, go through unimaginable things and they still power through and fight life, furthermore; a helping hand always goes a long way. For Amahle, Ayanda, is a true role model because she was able to stand in front of them every day and share her story, despite fighting a life-threatening illness. This made Amahle look at herself and see her problems as less than what she perceived them to be.

Amahle has noticed that in townships that there isn’t much communication. This hinders communities because community members are not given the opportunity to be heard and share the ability to confide in each other. “There is more peace in the community and love” is what her neighbour said when asked about Amahle’s impact.

This is because Amahle understands that words can make or break a person. Thus, it is always important to carefully speak your mind to ensure that we are detrimental to another person’s success.

When considering how Amahle has changed since becoming a member of YWOMB, we have seen here become more able to discuss pressing matters, her personal feelings and anything she finds worth a discussion. This means that she is more open to communication which has in turn allowed her to find solutions to the issues that she is facing because others are able to guide her, specifically the YWOMB leaders.

Even her family has seen this change in her and has gladfully embraced it. She says that her mother once told her That she is happy the YWOMB allows and facilitates these open discussions as wells as the fact that these discussions have a lasting impact on her daughter.

Amahle often contributes to discussions during YWOMB meetings and her input as often proved useful in developing the practices of Epic Youth Matters and specifically YWOMB. Once can thus see how she has fed back to WVL grantee organisation and WVL-SA fund manager. She betters the same organisations that has helped better her own life.

As previously mentioned, Amahle was previously unable to be vulnerable and face her inner conflict which posed a challenge. She simply overcame this by opening herself up to learning from the YWOMB leaders. As a driver of change she has opened herself up to learning from and has in turn helped other do the same.