Is It Worth Staying Alive?

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If you are 21 years old, paralyzed and an orphan, with no income, no access to modern technology or books to keep your mind busy, would it really be worth staying alive?  Siyabulela Rhixana has tried to commit suicide twice, or so his social worker tells me.

Siya did have a laptop, but it was stolen, and there wasn’t much he could do about it.  He was also given an old TV, but this has stopped working.  Siya does have extended family, but they live in George up in the Garden Route and he is in Cheshire House in Langa, Cape Town, so his contact with them is limited.

One night five years ago (Christmas 2006) Siyabulela was a passenger in a car with some other young guys, coming back from a party.  The car left the road on a sharp corner and ended in a deep ditch.  One passenger was killed, the driver was unharmed and Siyabulela’s neck was broken.  Siyabulela was in Grade 9.  He is now too old to be liable for any claim from South Africa’s new Accident Fund, and therefore only receives a disability grant from the government.  This goes straight into Chester House to cover his accommodation.  No-one helped him to continue his studies.

At 21, Siyabulela has his whole life ahead of him. He is the same age as our BBA1s.

Like all young adults, he too hopes to have a chance at creating his own future and finding his purpose in life.  An IT course at TSiBA’s ignition centre could be a start.  This could gain him skills which could allow him the possibility of seeking employment.  It would allow him some contact with the outside world and let make some friends his own age.

We appeal to the students and staff of TSiBA out there who live in Langa to think about solutions for getting Siyabulela to TSiBA campus, if he signed up to do an IT course?

Even if no student or staff member has the facilities to transport Siyabulela, perhaps someone out there knows a person or organization who is capable of doing this.  Please pass this appeal on to anyone who might be able to assist.

In the mean time, if anyone has a little time and the will to reach out to a young person in need of friendship and company, please go and visit.  Get to know Siya and allow him the chance to connect with the world again.  Let’s Pay It Forward and ignite opportunity for one more bright young man.

Siyabulela’s cell number: 0730570161

Birth date: 25 March 1990

Cheshire House: 021-6942844

Rhodes Street

Zone 2


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