Popular Lifestyle Club, SomethingSosha, held a first of its kind Youth Day celebration for 2021 graduates. The graduates, clad in their academic regalia, were treated to a sumptuous lunch in recognition for their hard.
The event was also a gesture of encouragement and inspiration for younger people in the townships never to lose hope in their endeavours in their persuasion of their dreams on their education pathways.
Speaking to Sosh Times, one of the co-owners of Lifestyle Club, Kgomotso Thebe, said she and her business partners Tebogo Matjeke and Gloria Mtila, sat down to conceptualise a unique idea honour all the students who died in 1976 upheavals. And in turn, to celebrate the hard work of those who graduated in 2021. “We wanted to shy away from (school) uniform and staff and give credit to education, especially with everything that has happened last year”, she said.
One of the graduates, Kwena Matlala, dropped out of university in 2012 to get a job and pursue her dreams in modelling, she was then crowned Miss Curvey body South Africa 2019. In the same year she went back to school to study because she wanted to match with her family members who had completed their university studies. “I am the last born at home and I didn’t have any qualifications so I became the ‘ black sheep’, but at age 32, I finally got my first degree in 2020 and graduated in June 2021”.
Matlala added that she was proud of herself and her fellow graduates, “studying is hard, but studying during a pandemic is even harder, but I am so proud of myself that I managed to get my National Diploma in Public Management from the Tshwane University of Technology”.
She further stated that she is excited about the day’s event which is something that is different. She said she came with her friends to celebrate with other graduates and is hopeful she will be back again next year to celebrate another graduation.
Thebe further expressed gratitude that their idea to celebrate graduates was so well received by the community, adding that the event was to hold graduates in high regard by honouring the lives of those who died in 1976.
She further added that event would be held every year. According to Thebe, from next year they hope to make it bigger and better, “we hope from next year we will invite more graduates and business people who will see potential for their businesses and offer employment opportunities to these young people”.