“It takes nothing from my candle to light yours” – This was the title of my oldest son’s graduation speech to the class of 2009 when he graduated from Rhodes; I was sitting front and centre in the auditorium with his biological grandmother and two younger siblings. I was proud that the four years in university had opened his eyes to the needs of people like us in the world – granted, very few people have two divorce settlements and pension funds to fall back on like I do, but I am a firm believer that we can all do something to impact the world; it’s up to us whether the impact is for good or for bad.
Two months ago when he came home for a catch up – he flies in every couple of months from Cape Town and we have lunch, and sometimes dinner if I’m lucky – he told me that he had saved up some money and wanted to start a movement called My Turn (10), he said he needed me to help him identify five school age kids for him to mentor, combining that and the other five he had already found in Cape Town he would have His Turn (10).
It turns out he had already bought the Cape Town kids some school and extramural/sporting essentials. I was so proud of him; he proved that he didn’t have to be a hippie like I am or to chain himself to alien trees that were under siege in order to make a difference.
In keeping with that spirit I went online and looked for charities that assist with causes close to my heart and about which not many people have heard. I am passionate about children, education and the environment, this may not be the same for you. If that’s the case you can look on the Charity SA website , the most comprehensive database of non-profit organisations in the country.
Here are a couple of organisations that caught my eye and need all the help you can give:
World Changers Academy: They train unemployed youth and place them with big businesses within KZN, they have relationships with organisations that include MR Price Group.
AFM Welfare Council: They work with traumatised children, the aged and people affected or infected by HIV, with the help of social workers, trained house parents and volunteers.
At the end of the week when my son comes home, I will introduce him to the Mpumalanga half of his 10.
Thought for the day: What are you doing to pay it forward?