ZIMBABWE: Mental health has become a global concern in the time of COVID-19. People are finding it hard to adjust their lifestyle at this time. However, in the process of fighting the catastrophe, many young people are failing to cope with the lockdown conditions which have restricted their rights. The majority of youths have lost hopes of the future due to the pandemic. Now, most of them have resorted to drugs and sexual activities. However, Ignite Youth Organisation has devoted itself to help young people discovering the purpose of their lives.
A time in which youth are finding it difficult to get the much needed emotional support as most of their dreams of education, career goals, and earning income have been shattered.
Ignite Youth Organisation is helping young people to discover and lead purposeful lives in this time of the pandemic through career guidance. The organization is also coaching young people between (13-19) and adults between (20-29) years to create meaningful careers and vocations.
The Ignite Youth Founder Tadzie Madzima said that their main goal has been to give the youth a sense of purpose even in times where every path seems unknown.
“Essentially, we are taking a deep dive in equipping young people with the necessary skills to customize their talent so that they can find a career and vocation that befits and benefits the society as well, during and beyond the pandemic,” she added.
Since the beginning of the lockdown in March 2020, the organization has held multiple online discussions on WhatsApp and Zoom platforms and has supported over 20,000 youths under its mentorship program.
Ignite Youth Organisation has also partnered with different Non-Governmental Organisations aiming to generate purposeful, responsible, and skilled youths who will become the African leaders of tomorrow.
Currently, the organization is set to resume its activities under the theme ‘Pressing Forward’.
Madzima said that the program will continue to provide emotional support to youths.
“COVID-19 is still upon us and this year it is even deadlier than last year. Because of this, mental health is a critical theme for us this year as we would like to make sure we provide more emotional support”.
Helping people to find their purpose in life
“We also want to put our core mission at the front and center of everything we do, which is to help young people discover their purpose,” said Madzima.
This year the organization will introduce a monthly purpose-driven curriculum which will help to monitor the effectiveness of the program.
“It is a blend of personal development and mentorship training, outreach community activities, goal-setting and vision board creation, mental health and achieving emotional well being, some fun tests to see if youths have mastered hard and soft skills necessary for the work environment or landing scholarships and job opportunities. The curriculum will help us to make sure the youth are hitting the necessary milestones needed for them to move closer to passionately pursuing their purpose”, Madzima said.
She added that Ignite’s strong leadership is made of program heads and leaders who are working on the 2021 strategies for their programs.
Since its launch in 2018, Ignite Youth has reached over 8,000 youths across Harare and Bulawayo and the majority of these are girls.
The organization has also taught the youth some important skills and has conducted online tutorials on making re-usable sanitary wear and masks with the help of consulting experts.