Staying Strong Empowers PACT’s Youth Leaders
PACT (Prince Albert Community Trust) is a NPO committed to making a lasting impact through empowering and enabling the youth of the greater area it serves, while fighting to transform the current status quo of the inequality that is still so deeply embedded in society. PACT strives to drive transformation through education, health and well-being, and youth and skills development. In honour of Nelson Mandela Day, the Staying Strong Toolkit is being made available to the interns and volunteers of the organisation.
Staying Strong: A well-being Toolkit with a difference
“Today, we celebrate Mandela Day 2021 with deep gratitude and thanks to Free To Grow,” says Ingrid Wolfaardt, Founder and Executive Trustee of PACT. Ingrid adds, “as an active citizen of South Africa, Free To Grow is living the essence of Mandela Day by inspiring change in the Prince Albert community through making available their ‘Staying Strong Toolkit’ to form part of the development journey of 20 PACT youth interns and volunteers.”
Staying Strong focuses on building skills of resilience, optimism and ownership – strengthening people’s emotional roots to serve and support themselves and others. “We believe that through the implementation of ‘Staying Strong’ and our partnership with Free To Grow, we will positively impact the growth and well-being of our youth, and further empower them as change agents in the Prince Albert community,” explains Ingrid.
“I met Alinda Nortje years ago when John and I were farming in the Warm Bokkeveld. At the time, Alinda was passionately involved in community development programmes within our farming community. Now, 30 years later, life has connected us again, her, as the Founder and Executive Chair of Free To Grow and me, as the Founder of PACT. Both of us continue to be inspired by bringing hope, making a difference, and building capacity in our communities. It’s an honour to receive this gift from Alinda and we are excited about the possibilities of our new-found partnership,” concludes Ingrid.
The journey ahead
Alinda shares in PACT’s excitement about the Staying Strong journey ahead. Her hope is that this will be the start of a close collaboration between Free To Grow and PACT, with Free To Grow actively contributing to strengthening the impact of PACT.
To Alinda, Prince Albert has symbolic significance. “Free To Grow was born in rural communities,” she explains. “Over the past few years I have developed a strong yearning to take the wellbeing and growth programmes, so successfully used by big corporates, back to these communities.”
Apart from this, Prince Albert was the hometown of her paternal grandparents and she fondly recalls how, as children, they played in the ‘leivoor’ that ran across her grandfather’s plot.
“My hope is that Free To Grow becomes the water that helps nurture the minds and hearts of people from these communities who thirst for growth and development,” Alinda concludes.
Ingrid Wolfaardt with a few of the HERO Warriors from Prince Albert