MASINYUSANE’S most basic goal is to create opportunities for people. Opportunities to eat a healthy meal. Opportunities to gain a quality education. Opportunities to have someone believe in and mentor you. And most importantly, opportunities to realize your potential, to live a meaningful life, and to pursue your dreams.
The AIDS pandemic has ravaged our already impoverished communities, leaving behind orphans, broken homes, and desperate poverty. Many of our kids go through each day without eating a healthy meal, attending a functioning school, or simply waking up in a home with their own parents. Overcoming these obstacles is daunting. How does one go about alleviating such poverty?
Masinyusane will not be able to change the townships (i.e. urban slums) in South Africa. But our kids will. Our strategy is to flood our communities with university graduates and empowered youth. These youth will then solve their own problems, uplift their own families, and serve as role models to their own youth. Many of our kids have become the pride of their community as they are the first to attend university. They are breaking out of the cycle of poverty, paving a path forward, and serving as an example for future youth to follow.
As our kids repeatedly demonstrate, there is much reason for hope. One must never underestimate the power of the human spirit. Our kids suffer through difficulties most of us could never imagine; yet they still smile, still dream, and still have hopes for a better life. All they need is the opportunity.