A Hero Story: Meet David
In each support group we try to identify a ‘hero’ who has made the most progress, or defied the odds to succeed. It’s always difficult to choose just one learner. These kids have been through much, and persevere in learning to cope and live their lives cheerfully.
Meet David. He is 16 years old and a little small for his age. We suspected learning difficulties and therefore had been referred to the headmaster. An educational psychologist will do an assessment and hopefully he will likely be moved to a skills based school, where he can achieve and perhaps focus on his true love for drama and acting.
So why choose David as my hero for the group? A boy who failed his grade last year. Because the buzz word for Khululeka is resilience and David has bucket loads of this. He oozes positive energy and has managed to remain calm and confident in spite of his difficulties.
David has experienced multiple deaths in his family within a time span of only five years. He attended 100% of the support group sessions, participated well, and really valued the sessions. He even self-referred for further individual sessions.
At a post-support group session he shared yet another recent death in the family, his aunt. A week later his very close cousin who was only 13 years old died in a car accident. This final loss really shook him. The two boys were also neighbours and close friends in the same acting group on Saturday mornings.
He lives with his parents, a younger sister and some extended family, in Hanover Park. Sadly the violence and death continues. His neighbour was killed in recent shootings, his brother was shot in the arm, and a young girl from his complex was shot in the stomach. This really affected him.
Despite all, his overall attitude is a positive one, looking to a future in which he plans to be a famous actor, have a big house and twin children!