The youth have become synonymous with a lot of issues, and one of those is that they are lazy. It’s a reputation we will have to live with for now, and it’s not entirely false.
We always want everything to be done for us. There is a mentality that the world owes us everything, simply for being born human. We feel entitled to everything. Unfortunately, that’s not how things work in the real world. One has to earn their dues through hard work and other variables that come with age.
One of the youth’s biggest challenges is unemployment, which I personally believe comes from the belief that if you go to school and score good grades, you will be guaranteed employment after graduation, which the government and our parents instil in us from a young age. Only after graduation do we learn that it’s not entirely true; moving from unemployed to employment is another challenge on its own.
So, the onus lies with the youth themselves. The government and our parents can only take us so far: we need to self-educate ourselves; formal education can only do so much for us. The youth need to stop being ignorant and lazy, and to go that extra mile by taking charge of their future.
The government is playing its part to the best of its resources, and it is our responsibility to meet it half way. An example of this is the availability of public libraries; they are all over the country, meant to help the youth and to make education accessible to even those who do not attend school, but we do not make use of these facilities.
When the last time you read a book that wasn’t prescribed, or which is not a textbook from school? When was the last time you taught yourself a new skill? There is a weak reading culture in Namibia, especially among the youth. We just don’t want to practise self-education.
We suffer from a lack of innovation because we don’t feed our minds with sufficient information. We lack creativity because we don’t expand our current reality. Everybody wants the youth to succeed, but they can only do so much for us; we have to take it upon ourselves and teach ourselves to get ahead.
The sad reality is that you are in it alone in this life. Ultimately, you are responsible for yourself. There is only so much that can be taught, and it is up to you to learn, unlearn, and relearn what you need to know.
*Olavi Popyeinawa holds a diploma in Alternative Dispute Resolution, and he is currently studying law, LLB, at the University of Namibia (Unam). He will be weekly contributing to this column on youth matters. Instagram: niceguy_olavi Facebook: Olavi Longfellow Twitter: @OlaviPopyeinawa