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EXPLORING THE LIVES AND EDUCATIONAL ASPIRATIONS OF

MARGINALISED MIGRANT YOUTH: A CASE STUDY IN

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA

by

WADZANAI FAITH MKWANANZI





This thesis is submitted in accordance with the requirements for the

PhD in Development Studies

in the

Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences

at the

University of the Free State

Bloemfontein, South Africa

March 2017



Supervisors:

Prof. Merridy Wilson-Strydom


Prof. Melanie Walker


Dr. Sonja Loots

Page 169

152



migrant youth shared their experiences of ASS. Four of the youth are registered for

programmes at college or at university and highlighted that the opportunity to develop

and expand their educational functionings at ASS was not only important for leading to

new educational aspirations, but also enhanced their wellbeing in other ways. Some of

the migrant youth who attend ASS had this to share:



In Zimbabwe I wrote only two subjects, I left during exam time. I came and

attended Albert Street, and the school was only a year old by that time so we were

only few, like fifteen guys, so we were helped by Albert Street to write our O-

Level[s]. We were taken to Albert Street the same day we arrived and we were

welcomed there at Albert Street, there was everything, we could bath[e], we could

do everything there. (Lesley)



We heard other people talk about a place called ‘Methodist’ where other

Zimbabwean migrants were staying and we asked more about it and that’s when

we got here [at the church]. It was on the same day when we arrived here and we

talked to Dr. Gasi. We were asked our ages and then he recommended us to go to

school because we were still young. (Lindani)



When I heard about the school, they said they would give us food, somewhere to

sleep, and somewhere to bath[e]. When I arrived in Jo’burg I had spent about two

weeks without bathing, only washing my face. When I first went to school we were

very few and there were very few teachers, you could not see that you were at

school. It seemed as if we were playing. Truly speaking I thought I would only stay

there for two months until I get work. But then I saw a light. (Pete)



Because I was young, Dr. Gasi encouraged every young person to go to school. From

there I developed a passion for the film industry. (Rusu)



Another important factor to consider regarding some of the migrants youths’

determination for schooling is that young people who migrate as minors often do not

have attached responsibilities, hence may choose not to contribute. Additionally,

because of age, some may not get jobs, and as a result focus on pursuing education at

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