Columba – Proof of the Pudding?

At the end of last year we published an article on the work of Columba, working on leadership issues in underprivileged schools, here’s a great success story

Columba Leadership Graduate bags 7 distinctions

KZN’s future Actuary Sakhile Njoko and Siyanda Secondary School RCL Secretary bags 7 distinctions.

Sakhile has proved it is possible to beat the odds.

Having lost both parents at a very early stage, 17-year-old Sakhile has stood on the shoulders of his 4 siblings and people who kept reminding him that he can achieve whatever to put his mind and soul to.

Speaking to Sakhile, he mentioned that he was very anxious when the final exams were approaching,

he knew he had all in control since he started preparing for Grade 12 while busy with his Grade 11.

“I did not start starting only when I got to Grade 12. I started when I was in Grade 11. I would attend Grade 12 sessions whenever there were extra classes. I was introduced to organizing my time when I attended the Columba Leadership Academy when I was in Grade 10. Since my participation in the Columba Leadership Programme, I have been able to set my own goals and work very hard towards achieving them, I am goal driven and focused on my studies.”  Said Sakhile

Columba Leadership is a peer-driven leadership programme that works with principals, teachers, local community members and corporate partners to engage young people in a programme of leadership development that elicits and unleashes their potential to be agents of positive social change.

The relationship between Columba and Siyanda Secondary School started in June 2010 and the school has embraced the programme since then. Sakhile was one of the leaners that went to the Columba Leadership Academy which is a six-day residential which is the ‘activation’ phase of the programme whereby learners and educators are introduced to the values based leadership programme. The residential provides educators with a different perspective of their learners and provides them with alternative methods of engaging youth. Youth are exposed to a different way of approaching their future to motivate them and allow them to start a journey of personal development.

Amongst other successes, Sakhile has also been part of the Language Festival for the past six years and has won over ten trophies in the provincial competitions for Parliamentary debate and best speech.

One of the other things that Sakhile mentions to have been very helpful though his Secondary schooling was to create a flexible study time table that will enable him to focus on the subjects that are lacking. He also mentions that his main worry in the future is the alarming unemployment rate that makes him wonder if he would be able to get employed once he has completed his tertiary qualification.

Sakhile received a letter of acceptance into Wits University, and he will be studying Actuarial Science.

For Additional comments, please contact our KZN Provincial Manager Mr Innocent Munyanga 072 604 1086 or email

Issued by Sello Ramosepele of Columba Leadership on  or call 011 440 5790