It takes a community to raise a child, words of wisdom and the teaching of morals and principles equip a man to stand boldly in front of the world.

Shamelessly and passionately the youth loot shops of foreign-nationals as they carry out mindless xenophobic-attacks.

In the past Stats SA revealed that 2,288 out of 100,000 males aged between 18 and 20 years were convicted of committing a crime compared with 1,481 per 100,000 for males aged 21 and older. Approximately 109 out of every 100,000 youths are convicted for robbery.

A drug report investigation revealed that from 1992 to 1995 the use of drugs among teenagers increased by 600%. That figure is still increasing and is now 1100%. A 2007 report said that Gauteng’s youngest drug dealer was an 8 year old boy from Douglasdale (The Gauteng Drug awareness).

The people who fill our prisons are young people. The people who stand at traffic lights with guns ready to highjack are young people. Go into rehab centres and you will be met by young people fighting drugs addictions.

The question on everyone’s lips is what has happened to this world? Who will look after the wellbeing and future of the planet? The people who are supposed to answer cannot, as they follow trends, drink and spend their time being destructive.

The hope for young people who are educated to save the continent and the world at large is valid. Because it is well known that when an individual is educated, the way in which he/she deals with situations is different and better as compared to an uneducated individual. Emotional intelligence and belief systems act as catalysts to decision-making.

If education is important, then it is the responsibility of parents, the community and teachers to make sure the quality and deliverance of content and learning material is reliable and superior with researched facts and theories. But it does not end there, young people have to take responsibility for their education. They have to know why they are going to school and understand for who they are going there for.

They should also demand the facilities necessary to make education a holistic experience.   Entrepreneurship will also play a vital role in shaping the nation’s future, both educationally and financially. The spirit of experimenting with new ideas, coming up with innovative solutions to win the energy battle, create employment and thus fight social issues, while building an economic powerhouse to compete with other emerging economies.

This is a big project that will take a long time to manifest. It is not about building the biggest brick-wall, to lie every brick down as best as you can is what matters. Then at the end you will have a great brick wall.

This is the attitude that young people need to learn and adopt. Develop short, medium and long term goals that will lead to the building of that great wall of the future.

A book called Leadership 2020, which is one of my favourite leadership books by a South African, aims to inspire billions of young people to make a difference and become leaders by the year 2020. The author, Tony A Gaskins Jr, writes in the book: “Nothing comes to a sleeper but a nightmare”. He goes on to say that people must understand that you have to work hard to reach your goals. Nightmares come to you in the form of poverty, stress, addiction and affliction. These things catch people who are idle; those who sit around waiting for other people to shape their futures.

And after waiting they realise that nobody came to rescue them. That nobody felt sorry for them but themselves. When this happens, the biological clock has ticked and the energy that is required is no more available. Colonel Sanders is the only man past his prime (Who I know of) who achieved tremendous success.

He goes on to say: “The problem in our world today is that many people want a handout instead of a hand up”.

I trust this work presented to you acts as a hand-up!