How We Do It
The first obstacle was to gain community support. We initiated a two pronged approach with the Chief of Tshesebe and other local dignitaries; along with the North East District AIDS Coordinator who rallied various colleagues and initiated an introductory meeting to gain approval for us to proceed.
There was a plan in place, however, our first day was spent kicking a ball on the local soccer pitch around the time that the kids left school. 8 boys started to join us on that day. The next day, about 20 joined us. The third day, well in excess of 100 started to play with us and the daily after school activities grew from there.
We found that some members of the Youth joined us and we agreed that we would pay them to lead games of soccer, skipping etc. The other activities were introduced slowly over time and we constructed our own buildings.
Running parallel to these activities, we worked slowly with the local dignitaries through the proper channels of village culture and gained credibility. One example of how we did this is seen in the attached leaflet.
If we are truly going to make a difference, we have to take a long-term view (minimum of 20 years). We know that we are only part of the way through and believe that the local community is in support of what we are trying to achieve.