As part of the SALDRU-led research consortium to design a Basic Package of Support for young people who are not in education, employment or training, the project recently partnered with the youth leadership organisation, Activate!, to run workshops to gain a deeper insight into the challenges faced by young people in South Africa, their needs and their everyday experiences.
The first workshop, held at the Isivivana Centre in Khayelitsha in mid-June, gathered 25 young people – 11 women and 14 men – who were from both rural and urban areas, ranging from Gugulethu to Beaufort West. The second workshop, held at the Tshimolong Precinct in Johannesburg on 21 June, engaged with 23 young people, 10 men and 13 women, also from both rural and urban communities in Gauteng province.
The conversations with these young people reminded the workshop facilitators of how much judgement young people face in their communities and how crucial it is for them to feel respected and supported. Participants emphasised their need for mentorship and guidance in various aspects of their lives and opened up about the challenges of mental health in their family, circle of friends and communities. The input of these young people was invaluable as the project proceeds with designing the Basic Package of Support.