Project Description

TAKWASA
This camp has taught us brotherhood, and that we should be there for each other as men. 31 MAY TO 2 JUNE 2019
ATTENDEES: 89
ALEX
CHAMP
CAMP
- Amigo Base
Slide

REPORT: 

The Alexandra men’s Champ Camp took place on the banks of the Vaal River at the Takwasa Camp facility near Parys. Eighty-nine men arrived in two busses on a cold Friday evening not knowing what to expect. It was after dark when the busses arrived and the men were ushered into a hall and divided into six groups each with a dedicated Outward Bound instructor.

  • After an introduction, a few icebreakers and a meal the groups retired to their sleeping cabins to get some rest. The weekend’s activities started early the next morning with a short PT session before breakfast.

  • Each group worked their way through a series of challenging activities designed to get them out of their comfort zones and learn more about themselves and their team members.

  • Each activity was debriefed to drive home elements of the #NoExcuse message and principles of authentic masculinity. Participants experienced a wide range of emotions as they discovered things about themselves and the world. The sessions helped the men to take a closer look at themselves, to find out who they are and how to deal with the issues they face in their daily lives.

  • One of the most touching incidences was when one of the groups gathered voluntarily in the time after a meal to honour each other in response to one of the learning sessions about forming a band of brothers.

  • On the last day the men were given solo time for reflection and introspection after which they had the opportunity to share their stories with each other.

  • The weekend culminated in a group pledge and the men left feeling inspired to go back to their communities as changed men to make a difference.

  • The campus student support manager, Mr. Tekana, shared with us the difficulty he experiences getting male students to attend as they were generally not interested in any of the programmes offered by the college.

  • The dynamic with an all-male audience was noticeably different from the other college sessions that the team had run. There was greater openness and frankness and the type of issues discussed went deeper to the core of masculinity.

  • Common issues that were raised:

    • What makes a man a real man.
    • The impact of fatherlessness on boys.
    • The role of men in society.
    • What men can do in the fight against women abuse.
  • When asked who had active father figures in their lives, less than 10 raised their hands out of a group of 300!  There was a lot of emotion when the facilitator said to them that it is not their fault that they did not have fathers, but it will be their fault if they do not learn from their fathers’ shortcomings.

  • One student commented with agreement from others that had it not been for the #NoExcuse workshop, they would have never been able to confront the challenge of woman abuse because it is such a norm in the community. After the workshop, the college asked us to please come again, expressing concern about the way men are being raised in the community. They feel that this campaign is one of very few that can lead to positive change in the community.

SOMETIMES WE AS MEN ONLY APPRECIATE EACH OTHER WHEN WE ACQUIRE MATERIAL THINGS, WE DON’T REALLY HONOUR EACH OTHER ON GOOD DEEDS.

VUSUMUZI KHOZA

“AS A MAN THINK SMART, THINK TOWARDS THE FUTURE AND THE YOUNG ONES WHO ARE GROWING UP.

PAUL BALOYI

I WAS ALSO BORN IN A SITUATION WHERE OUR DAD USED TO BEAT US. I GREW UP HATING MY DAD. I GOT TO A POINT WHERE I COULDN’T TRUST HIM.

AMIGO BASI

IF I WERE TO CHOOSE MY FATHER, WHO WOULD I CHOOSE?

ITUMELENG MAMPURU

SOMETIMES WE AS MEN ONLY APPRECIATE EACH OTHER WHEN WE ACQUIRE MATERIAL THINGS, WE DON’T REALLY HONOUR EACH OTHER ON GOOD DEEDS.

VUSUMUZI KHOZA

“AS A MAN THINK SMART, THINK TOWARDS THE FUTURE AND THE YOUNG ONES WHO ARE GROWING UP.

PAUL BALOYI

I WAS ALSO BORN IN A SITUATION WHERE OUR DAD USED TO BEAT US. I GREW UP HATING MY DAD. I GOT TO A POINT WHERE I COULDN’T TRUST HIM.

AMIGO BASI

IF I WERE TO CHOOSE MY FATHER, WHO WOULD I CHOOSE?

ITUMELENG MAMPURU

Solutions to our problems as men aren’t in the alcohol. Cowards do that.

– Joshua Letwaba

WATCH A CLIP OF THE CAMP