Before I came to camp, I was involved with negative friends and had no direction at all. My family didn't believe that I could finish my matric [high school exams], and go further with my studies. I wasn't confident with myself, because I was surrounded by people who were not nice to me. I had club feet and people would call me names. I lost my confidence through that. I lived with my mom and dad and three siblings. I am the oldest. My mom is the only breadwinner for now, and I help where I can. My aunt has HIV. Before I came to camp I thought she would die soon and now I know more and I can help here in ways I couldn't before.
When I went to camp, the first day I felt at home, welcomed, and loved. When time went on, I was able to be confident in myself, and accept the way I am. I wouldn't talk before, and now I am outgoing and confident and talk all the time. That's when I decided I wanted to be a vochelli to help other kids believe in themselves, that they can succeed. Without camp, I don't think I would have finished my matric. I didn't believe in myself. In life skills, the topic of self esteem made me realize that I have more in me than what other people see. Vochellis never gave up on us, even now. That gave me the strength I needed to get through matric. After that I went to the University of South Africa and studied. I had to drop out due to financial problems, and now I am at South Western College studying to become a teacher, because I realized I want to be working with children. I feel like I have found my calling. I want to support children to grow with a positive attitude. I want kids to believe in themselves, and help them know that they can make it.
Even though my family doesn't believe that I can finish my studies, I still put in the effort because I believe in myself thanks to my experience at Camp Sizanani.