In 2007, Siviwe Mbinda established the Happy Feet Youth Project, with a passion for helping the youth of Langa, Cape Town overcome their circumstances. Largely funded by Siviwe’s tourism business, the Youth Project seeks to intervene at critical stages in young people’s lives to help prevent crime, teen pregnancies, and their initiation into gangsterism. Essentially, the Happy Feet Youth Project operates to prevent young people in disadvantaged areas from becoming criminals. It seeks to give them hope and an alternative path through support, inspiration, and education. Serving around 300 youth, the Youth Project successfully provides a safe after-school environment for the children in its community. Children who would otherwise become lost, forgotten, and hopeless. Shortly before the lockdown, Siviwe launched a new support campaign – which he calls The Township Driving Academy - to empower youth between the ages of 18 and 22 with driver’s licences. This not only gives them an incredible sense of achievement, but also unlocks immense employment opportunities. Although the Happy Feet Project was previously funding this initiative, the lockdown has made this increasingly difficult and in light of this, Siviwe has reached out for support. Recognising the importance of this campaign and the difference it can make in the lives of Langa’s youth, the DUKKS Foundation has partnered with the Happy Feet Youth Project and Backabuddy to help raise the funds needed to grant 12 youths with the chance to get their driver’s licences. The DUKKS Foundation was founded after young Daniel Ullrich-Koetter-Knight-Schilling gave his life to protect two women who were being mugged. In his honour, his family created the DUKKS Foundation to help impoverished youth conquer their circumstances, instead of turning to delinquency. As such, its ethos dovetails perfectly with that of the Township Driving Academy Project. It is in times of crisis that we truly recognise the power of community. We are reaching out to the public to help us raise the funds needed to change and give purpose to the lives of youth that would otherwise not have access to opportunities like this. Through this Backabuddy campaign, DUKKS and the Happy Feet Project aim to raise just R51 480. This will ensure that 12 disadvantaged youth are given a real chance at finding employment and changing their lives for the better - and in so doing, that they are charged with aspiration, and not offences. With these funds, 12 youths – who undergo a careful selection process by Siviwe himself - will receive their learner’s licences, ID photos, 25 driving lessons, assistance in booking dates for their driver’s tests, and a vehicle for testing on the day. Every donation, no matter how small, will play an integral role in funding this campaign, giving a South African youth the chance to not only survive, but succeed.
R5,264.38 donated of R51,480.00 goal