Educating the Namibian child
A 21-year-old bookkeeper from Swakopmund is on the fast track to educate the youth around him by providing them with various opportunities.
04 August 2020 | Education
Elvino Bezuidenhoudt, owner and manager of Tutorific: “I really wanted to help the youth and donating food and making videos simply was not going to cut it.
A bookkeeper by day and a tutor by night, Elvino Bezuidenhoudt is all about educating the Namibian child. In 2018, he started a tutoring programme for high school learners specifically focusing on mathematics and accounting. He started with a group consisting of 32 learners and over the years the tutoring programme has grown from strength to strength.
“It has not been easy to get to this point. My mother was a single parent working as a hairdresser, going door to door to offer her services. We never lacked in what we needed growing up. She is the reason who I am today. After school, I got a job at Financial Consulting Services (FCS) to be able to support her financially. I started with my accounting studies at Unisa but decided to shift my focus to applied mathematics. My passion lies in numbers. My ultimate goal is to obtain my master's degree in mathematics. While working, I had my weekends all to myself, and I wasn't into the drinking and club going scene. So, I asked myself, what can I do to empower the youth?”
He explained that he feels that the youth of today are distracted and lack vision. “I asked myself how I can impact their lives. I really wanted to help them and donating food and making videos simply was not going to cut it. I then decided to use education.”
Bezuidenhoudt now has about 102 kids he tutors. “I use the tutoring as a motivation mechanism for learners. I host one-on-one sessions to get close and personal with each learner so that they can trust me, not only with their education but with their future as well. We advise them on how life is after school and how school is of utmost importance.”
In 2019, Bezuidenhoudt started the Whizz Youth Organisation in Swakopmund. He serves along with 17 other youth members with the aim to encourage the youth to live up to their true potential through recognising efforts and achievements in the form of certificates and rewards issued to remarkable youth in schools.
“Schools have strict criteria for awarding their students, which is totally correct since it needs to be fair, but there are really some kids that score 69% who miss the prize and who have worked just as hard but don't get the recognition. We award the hard-working students. We believe you don't need to be the best in order to be successful. Consistency is the key; success will eventually follow. The youth need to stay motivated, and that starts at school.
“It's quite simple, in order to empower the youth you need to add value to what they already have, be the match that light their candle because these kids don't realise that they have massive potential. It all comes down to attitude. It's all about you. We are only planting the seed, it's your responsibility to keep watering it.”
For the first time since the establishment of the tutoring programme, Bezuidenhoudt hosted a prize-giving ceremony as a means to motivate learners even more.
Dainisha Dien was awarded as the most tenacious student, Azelle van Rooi was student of the year, Caila April was the Dux student of the year and Ryan Titus received the senior tutor's award.
Caila April explained that the unique way Bezuidenhoudt teaches pushed her out of her comfort zone.
“When he first started tutoring me in mathematics, I obtained an 'F' symbol for the first trimester. By the second trimester I improved tremendously to a 'C' symbol.”
Ryan Titus also explained that he struggled tremendously with mathematics and physical science. “When I started with my classes, worrying about these subjects became a thing of the past. Just the motivation I received from Elvino, along with the other learners was a big plus, and the results thereafter were a bonus!”
Bezuidenthoudt furthermore explained that with his tutoring programme, which is now a full-fledged business, he employs three people.
“The idea is to give the youth an opportunity to work for their money. I don't look at the experience. I know a lot of underprivileged youth, parents who cannot afford to give their children pocket money. When I was at school, my mother ensured we had food on the table and that's it. I didn't have the luxury of monthly allowances; I had to find my own way. This taught me responsibility and working for your own money. The youth need money and not just opportunities to succeed.”