Stepping up to lead
LEAP believes in creating opportunities for gifted leaders to emerge and inspire the next generation. The LEAP Future Leaders Programme encourages LEAP’s own graduates to become teachers but there are many other ways that people are inspired to join the LEAP Community. Charles (Muzi) Manzini’s journey to a management position at LEAP 1 – Langa started with his involvement in the Teach South Africa programme.
All throughout university I was a tutor and really enjoyed it. Tutoring sparked the interest in teaching, and led me to a training workshop with the organisation Teach South Africa, which subsequently deployed me for a teaching position in Cape Town at LEAP.
When I learnt that LEAP serves disadvantaged communities through both social and academic intervention with an emphasis on maths and science, I knew that joining LEAP will be a wonderful opportunity for me to expand my participation in community and youth development.
I joined as a maths teacher and towards the end of 2013, I received an invitation to serve on the management team as a Relationship Leader. I was told that it is my attention to detail, connection with learners and eloquence that is linked with the ability to influence and motivate others. I was surprised that I had been chosen for a management position, but because I had come to know and understand the LEAP culture, I knew that the expectation was not for me to be an already-perfect leader.
I celebrate every successfully run day at school, as well as the progress and small daily achievements that each one of our learners and teachers acquire.
As a leader, my hope is to motivate learners to always try to perform at their best, so that when they see their results or when they achieve their goals in life they don’t look back and say “I’m better than this”. But, rather, for them to rest assured that they gave it their all, because by doing so they are giving themselves the best chance of grabbing any opportunity that may come their way.