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Being Young, in This Day and Age – Reflections from Young CDC Professionals - published 26 Jun 2019


Rene Marais, CDC Web Development Intern.

Being Young, in This Day and Age - Reflections from Young CDC Professionals

As President Cyril Ramaphosa said at the 2019 Youth Day Commemoration, “this country’s young people are far from being the lost generation. They are seizing the future with both hands.”

This line gives me as a young South African hope that things are becoming better through our generation, creating a better South Africa also for the next generation to come. Although there is a generation that continues to struggle, due to insufficient resources – it is up to us to create a better world for the rest of them, making resources available – bringing them closer to what seems like a vivid dream. I am involved in the environment of Information Technology, and believe there is still much that needs to be done in order to invest and grow our next generation and also help in growing & grooming young black females. With the turnover of the past years, we thrived to become an educated generation, yet despite having our Diplomas and our Degrees, we struggle to find work due to lack of experience.

We are a generation that has received help through our government, assisting us to survive through these obstacles supplying us with grants & pensions, just to help put food on the table. We are a generation that has been assisted with financial aids, such as NSFAS, to help secure our future financially – my only worry now, is the fact that we are required to pay back the money, all because we wanted to better our lives. Imagine now, we are educated enough, yet required to pay back thousands of Rands for the educational freedom that we wanted. This is a huge setback to me as a young South African that will forever live me in debt, because for me, a black-African female – I will not be able to afford a car, house, etc., until that debt is settled.

This leaves me with a question as to ‘Why are we given a fishing rod, to get pulled back into the water?’ These are the mutual feelings that most young South Africans have at the back of their mind, every time the month ends – after barely surviving a whole month. Part of me is proud of being part of a generation, which has been privileged with these necessities, to have achieved what I have acquired, through my escape – Education. Part of me feels worried, that there is a generation yet to come, some to follow through the same cycle, when do we break the cycle, and actually be given the fishing rod to fish, using our own bait, and finally bring home the fish?

So, when exactly can we seize our future with our own two hands?

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