Young student reaches for stars

Cynthia Mdluli needs help to raise R9000 which is needed as contribution for the South African Washington International Programme. The programme aims at inspiring and supporting leaders for better communities.
Cynthia Mdluli needs help to raise R9000 which is needed as contribution for the South African Washington International Programme. The programme aims at inspiring and supporting leaders for better communities.

Cynthia Mdluli (21) from Mandela Park in Hout Bay is over the moon that she will be joining other students on an internship to Washington next month, but she needs a little help.

The third year University of Western Cape student has to raise R9000 before they leave for their trip to Washington next month.

Being the eldest of three children and raised by a single mother who spent most of her life as a domestic worker, she can’t afford to raise this money and needs a helping hand.

She is one of the 20 students from different universities across the country that will be going for the South African Washington International Programme (SAWIP). Joining her and other students from her university are students from the University of Cape Town, University of Stellenbosch and the University of Pretoria.

Inspiring leadershipThe programme aims to prepare, inspire and support diverse new generations of emerging leaders to serve their communities and South Africa. SAWIP selects a diverse team for a seven-month programme.

They will be gone for six weeks from Saturday 11 June and she is supposed to pay the money needed before she goes.

The money will be used to help students entering the programme in the following year.

Mdluli is asking for good Samaritans to come to her rescue as she doesn’t want to miss this lifetime opportunity.

“This is something great for me and above all I know it will benefit my community as well. What I will learn there I will come back and share with others as well. I’m very passionate about my community and I would love to share the knowledge with them. There are so many things that are happening in our communities and this is an opportunity to learn and help out for better communities.

“I’m pleading for help with this money so that I can be able to attend the programme,” she says.

She believes this is a good opportunity to learn from others as well. “We will be sharing a lot of things and other cultures when we go there. I’m also looking forward to the networking sessions, particularly with entrepreneurs, as I want to be one in the near future, so I’m really excited.”

Changing livesSAWIP has three pillars which are seventh leadership, community service and professional exposure, she explains.

“This is something that’s worth attending; it teaches us how to be good leaders and how we can develop our communities. Above all I’m doing it for my community; I want to change lives. I want to give back as well because someone took their time to guide me and I didn’t go astray, so I want to do that for someone else. If it weren’t for that person I wouldn’t be here, so I want to help someone as well.”

Mdluli is passionate about community work. Also part of this programme they have to do 30 hours of community service before they go. “This is not a difficult one for me. Since primary school I have been involved with the Pascap Trust. They teach children about teenage pregnancy and drug abuse and we help with after-school care and homework. So this one will be very easy for me because I’m already involved in my community.”V Contact Mdluli on 063 221 1578

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