TRAINER PROFILE: Pamela Hlazo from Mthatha | Children's Radio Foundation

We use radio to amplify youth voices across Africa, giving them the skills and tools to speak about their lives

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I am Pamela Mihle Hlazo, and I am 30 years of age. I was born in the Pondoland side of the former Transkei (Ngqeleni). I am the second born out of four. I am currently a presenter at Unitra Community Radio FM and an LLB student at University of South Africa. I am also a mother of two boys.

How did you get involved with CRF?

In 2014 Mike and the former regional trainer Tabiso approached the station and then they finalised the deal to work together. A suggestion was made to the station manager, Mr Mtshandu to select the mentor and chose me, after he noticed my efforts around the station.

What is the best part of being a facilitator, and your highlight of 2016?

Having to work with the youth and being exposed to the challenges that they face is something that I didn’t care about before.¬† The program has given me maturity and made me a better person and a good mentor. My hightlight for 2016 was winning the award for the ‘Best Story on Gender’ at the Youth Radio Awards in Cape Town.

What difference do you think the program has made in the community?

It has opened, cleaned and healed wounds. It has provided a platform for the youth to speak out without being judged. It has brought hope that has been lost by many.

Can you give an example of someone who had lost hope and found it through the show?

We once did show about the importance of education, and there was a young girl who has dropped out of school for two years, and this year she went back to school after listening to the advice we gave on the show.

What are the challenges the youth face in your community?

Drug abuse, gangsterism, rape, gender-based violence, HIV and Aids, teenage pregnancy, dropping out of school, alcohol abuse – all these are challenges faced by the youth in our community.

What message do you have for the youth in your community?

My advice for the youth in my community is to speak out, make your own choices, make wise decisions, dream, dream and dream. Your past means just that, the past, so move on from it and focus on the future. Do your best and let God do the rest…

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