The SAYes Graduation, Saturday 12 November 2016, Cape Town


Events By Andrew Dellis , Dec 13, 2016

Our graduation this year was a wonderful celebration of 87 mentor-mentee matches and what they had achieved.

Mentors at SAYes' 2016 Graduation
SAYes’ Mentors 2016

We recognise that your time is valuable. It’s the most valuable thing you have. And this year our mentors gave four and half thousand hours of it to mentoring. That’s 183 days-worth of social change – 16 million moments of choosing to care about each other.


Cherry and her mentee
Cherry and her mentee

*Please note: for legal reasons we are unable to post photographs of mentees under the age of 18.

This year our leadership team spent time overseas, in the UK and the USA, meeting with groups who work with young people and with volunteers, just like we do. We learnt tremendously from this trip. SAYes mentoring programmes are up there with the best. And this is important, because as we all are beginning to see, the consequences of failing to inspire leaders of social change, are very serious indeed.

We are confident to say to our mentors that the time they gave to volunteering this year has been profoundly effective and meaningful.

We can tell our partner homes that our programmes include some of the best material we have seen anywhere, and that our support teams are some of the brightest, most professional and most committed you will find.

We can tell our business and non-profit partners that the impact of their support has been dramatically improved, by working with mentored young people.

And we can tell our donors that they have supported philanthropy that works – philanthropy designed with sound principles, principles of scale, effectiveness, sustainability and accountability.

We started this year with 100 mentor-mentee matches. On 12 November, 87 of those matches graduated. We are so thrilled and grateful to everyone involved, and especially to those mentors and mentees who endured tremendous hardships this year, but still preserved and honoured their word. They are now facing the world a little stronger, braver, and a little more independent, than they were yesterday. Perhaps Leonard Cohen puts it best:

“Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering,
There is a crack, a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in,
That’s how the light gets in”
– Leonard Cohen, Anthem.

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