We can’t fix people, change their situation or erase the things that happened to them.
Despite this, most interventions in Africa focus on fixing these problems. For example, if she needs a bicycle (the problem), we fundraise to buy it. And if they are unemployed (the problem) we strategize to create job opportunities.
The greatest downfall of this ‘deficit-based’ approach is the assumption that life is linear: A leads to B leads to C. We reason that taking care of A, will automatically solve C. However, life is far more complicated than that. Just receiving the bicycle does not keep my children from going hungry. In fact, it’s an attractive bargaining item when the need is to feed them!
That’s why LifeXchange thinks different. Our vision is sustainable transformation and to that aim we apply a ‘strength-based’ approach. As quantum thinkers, we see that it’s not just one thing (i.e. drugs) that leads to a specific challenge in a person’s life (i.e. drug addiction). There’s a magnitude of educational, familial and socio-economic factors interacting around a person that causes a problematic situation. So instead of trying to create the perfect environment, we strengthen the person internally by building resilience and a healthy self-concept that protects them against the temptation of drugs.
To achieve this, LifeXchange has developed an evidence-based one-on-one mentoring process that impacts people deeply and empowers them to live purposeful lives. It is a voluntary process which requires great dedication, intense training and selfless action, but it is one intervention that we can confidently say produces transformed lives in this generation and the ones to come.