Voices of Courage Event: 28 June

On 28 June, we held another successful event at Tyger Valley Shopping Centre, featuring a mix of inspiring talks and performances that left the audience MOTivated and energized. The lineup included actor, producer, and director Bianca Flanders; media personality and MOT ambassador Carl Wastie; stand-up comedians Da Faith and Diego Paulse; and poet Vusumuzi Mpofu.

About MOT and Tyger Valley Shopping Centre

Tyger Valley Shopping Centre has partnered with MOT SA to empower and engage the youth through a series of MOTivational events and activities under the Voices of Courage Campaign. This Campaign includes inspiring talks, fun activities, and motivational performances aimed at encouraging young people to find and use their voices.

Event Highlights
Bianca Flanders: Being Your Own Motivation

Bianca shared her journey of overcoming self-doubt and the importance of believing in oneself. Bianca emphasized the value of hard work, surrounding oneself with supportive people, and going the extra mile to achieve one’s goals. She recounted how these principles helped her publish her book and produce a feature film for Showmax. Her message was clear: “There’s only one you, and that’s what makes you beautiful. This is your superpower.”

Bianca also touched on the challenges she faced in her early years: “I realized that if I didn’t believe in myself, no one else would. It’s about putting your money where your mouth is and going the extra mile.”

A youth in the audience asked Bianca how she felt when she first published her book. She responded, “I cried so much from happiness because I was so involved in the process. It was overwhelming and beautiful.”

Another young person asked about her experiences in school. Bianca shared, “I didn’t fit in because of the way I looked and sounded. It wasn’t until I saw someone wearing their hair naturally that I decided to embrace my natural self, and that’s when I truly felt like me.”

Carl Wastie: Is being awesome everything you think it will be?

Carl addressed the topic, “Is being awesome everything you think it will be?” by sharing his personal story of resilience and determination. After his parents divorced during his grade 12 year, Carl became the main provider for his family. He worked multiple jobs to support his mother and brother and save for his education.

Carl’s perseverance paid off when he received a bursary from the City of Cape Town to study psychology. He encouraged the youth to work hard, embrace vulnerability, and stay true to themselves. “Being awesome isn’t always easy, but being authentic is what truly matters,” he said. Carl shared a pivotal moment from his gap year: “I was working to support my family and save for university when a lady asked why I wasn’t outside playing with friends. I told her my dream was to study at the University of Cape Town, and she encouraged me to apply for a bursary. That moment changed my life.”

Carl emphasized the importance of resilience and determination: “Don’t let one negative comment throw you off, especially when everything else is good around you. Use the challenges you face to empower you. Look at yourself in the mirror and tell yourself you are loved, you are your own motivation, and you can do it.”

Inspirational Performances

The event also featured comedic performances by Diego Paulse and Da Faith, who brought laughter and joy to the audience. Vusumuzi Mpofu captivated everyone with his powerful poems, “Being a Legend” and “How to be a Real-Life Superhero,” which resonated with the themes of courage and self-belief.

Youth Engagement

The youth in attendance were deeply moved by the speakers’ stories and messages. One young attendee related to Bianca’s experience of not fitting in at school, while others found Carl’s advice on hard work and vulnerability particularly impactful. The interactive Q&A sessions allowed the youth to engage directly with the speakers, gaining further insights and encouragement.

Closing Remarks

MOT SA Country Director, Viola Manuel, expressed her gratitude to Bianca and Carl for their powerful contributions. She highlighted how their speeches served as inspiration for the youth to put in the extra effort in their own lives. Viola thanked them, including Diego Paulse, Da Faith, and Vusumuzi Mpofu, for being such influential role models and for inspiring the next generation to be their best selves.

The Voices of Courage Campaign at Tyger Valley Shopping Centre continues to empower and engage the youth, fostering a community of support, motivation, and courage.

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