Conventional top-down approaches to social challenges fail to reach beneficiaries as they undermine the complexities of the environment, and communities do not relate to or respect them. In addition to this, the core underlying issues such as unemployment, the lack of support and understanding, the lack of role models and peer pressure fail to be adequately addressed. One cannot simply walk into disadvantaged communities and tell young people not to get involved in delinquent activities. A more holistic approach must be coordinated that encompasses structured guidance, an investment into relationships and ultimately, achievable positive outcomes.
The Ground Breakers Programme aims to achieve its objective by engaging with the education system, raising awareness within the communities relating to drug and gang education and culture, working closely with high risk youth. The Social Entrepreneurship aspect will teach basic sustainability skills such as woodwork, welding, bricklaying and growing, packaging and selling vegetables as well as securing jobs and internships for unskilled, inexperienced youths.
In addition the programme will incorporate R.U.S.H (Reach Unlimited Super Highs) which is an incentive to the programme that provides disadvantaged youths with the opportunity to experience extreme activities such as paragliding, skydiving, shark cave diving, etc, whilst simultaneously incorporating life skills into the experiences. The life lessons are short but effective, assisting participants to cope with real life issues such as conquering fear, beating stress or coping with peer pressure, whilst guiding them to choose more positive paths in life. In order to qualify for R.U.S.H, each group of ten youth must first complete various community projects and submit to regular intermittent drug testing. These projects involve either hard physical labour like painting, cleaning and fixing, or cerebral activities such as conducting school presentations, attending parent support groups or peer counselling. By incorporating life skills, community work, individual support and incentives into this programme, it is a fun, inspirational approach to reach young adults in a positive way.