From the Hostel Parents

2013 will surely be KeNako Academy’s most exciting and best year yet!  As we grow into the future, the academy offering is evolving and improving all the time, to the benefit of each year’s new set of students.  The aim of KeNako is always to give their students an edge in life.  As with anything in life, challenges and some tough times will automatically form a part of this process.  Nothing worthwhile comes easy, otherwise everyone else would be doing it!  So we see these new challenges as opportunities.  Opportunities to set ourselves apart and achieve something special!  Spreading the fame and being willing and able to take the blame is what sets a good leader apart from his peers and KeNako endorses these principles.  As hostel parents, we are ready to give the students our full support again this year as they take on their new challenges.

Effective this year the KeNako students will be spending a lot more time on the premises, at least until the school is moved into separate premises.  It is therefore very important for the students to go out and get away from the premises on a regular basis.  As part of the afternoon program, time has been allocated to an organised outdoor activity away from KeNako on a once a week basis.  Such outings will include aspects such as cycling/hiking in the forest and activities on the beach amongst other excursions.  Indeed, as I write this mail the students have already enjoyed their first outing, having cycled to a dam where they enjoyed a picnic lunch and had a chance to escape the daily rigours of the academy program.

Some new processes have been implemented for 2013.  Three different student committees will help drive selected elements related to the academy.  All students will serve on these committees and learn how to take responsibility for elements such as managing discipline in the student residence, organising social events and communicating concerns between students and KeNako staff in a proper way.  The students have already voted for Leaders and the Leaders will head up these committees.

On a social level the students will also help organise social events where friends from outside of KeNako Academy will be invited.  The first social for the year will happen just as soon as everybody is settled – it will probably already have happened as you are reading this mail!

There is a very warm atmosphere in the student residence at the moment, full of youthful enthusiasm and fun.  We want to keep it this way and create a great “team spirit” through camps, obstacle courses and a hike up to the top of the mountain during the course of the year.  Part of this year’s process is to not allow the students to go home too early in this first term.  Let’s give them time to settle in and get comfortable in their wonderful new surroundings.  It is a very big adjustment for some students to be so far away from home.  But the students are already bonding and forming very good friendships, many of which will last for life.  They’re learning a lot about standing on their “own two feet” in this big world.  They also learn to appreciate their parents and what their parents have done for them.

We appreciate that it is a very special time in the lives of these students and we feel privileged to be with them and to share in the laughs, tears and excitement of becoming young adults!

Jan and Marinda Fourie