No matter where children hail from, they all have the right to dream, to be educated and to prosper. As we celebrate the UN Universal Children’s Rights Day we chat to ten year old Thembani Primary School learner Luniko Bizo.
Luniko is growing up in the impoverished community of Langa in the Western Cape with her mom, dad and two brothers. She dreams of being a lawyer one day. “In South Africa people get accused of things they didn’t do and go to jail when they are innocent. Then, some of the criminals stay out of jail. I want to change that and so I want to be a lawyer,” she says confidently.
“Before I joined the Cubs I was naughty. But then my friends told me about Scouting. I decided to listen to them. I now know that I made the right decision. Children in my street don’t have discipline. They drink and fight and do drugs. At first when I joined Cubs they were angry with me because I didn’t want to be outside with them anymore. But now they understand that it is important to me and for my life. After school I go home and I do my school and Scout homework. I have learnt to have discipline and to care about others. Scouting keeps me out of trouble and has taught me that a lie is not going to make my life successful.”
When asked what makes Cubbing different from other extra-curricular activities, Luniko smiles softly and says “Akela does her best to make it fun! She makes me feel comfortable and happy. She reads stories to us and uses new words. That helps me to understand my subjects better. My grades for English, natural science and maths are good since I joined Scouting. We also talk about things in Scouting and then the teacher talks about them in class. I feel that I made the right decision for myself. I have also told my friends that if they want a better life, they must join! My father was also a Scout and so he is very proud of me and of what I am doing. This year I earned two badges and I feel very good about that!”
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