A life-skills intervention programme addressing the selfconcept of Afrikaans-speaking youth offenders
Wicomb, Priscilla Zenobia
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Life orientation is fundamental in empowering learners to live meaningful lives. Life-skills education and training forms part of life orientation and helps to address the abovementioned aspect. Life-skills education and training falls under the most recent and powerful approaches in handling psychological problems. It strives to adapt the principles of psychology and social science into teachable skills to ensure intra-personal effectiveness and improve the general quality of peoples' lives. The aim of this pilot study was to alter The Path programme to design and develop an intrapersonal life-skills programme aimed at enhancing the self-concept of youth offenders. The intervention research model of Rothman and Thomas (1994) was employed as foundation for the design and development of The Altered Path programme. The intervention research model was chosen as it aimed at creating a means to address problems experienced by individuals and society. It strives to improve the life, health and well-being of individuals and society. This purposeful sampling consisted of six Afrikaans-speaking, male youth offenders from the Drakenstein Juvenile Centre. The Altered Path programme was implemented in three stages. The first stage consisted of sessions one to seven. The following topics were covered during this stage: introduction and programme orientation, conceptualisation of mission statements and elements, past personality influences and Cup of Sorrow, the Positive Prophecy and Talent Shield, the mission statement, the vision statement and goal setting. The second stage, which consisted of sessions eight and nine, entailed the training of the participants for service learning. The third stage entailed the implementation of the service learning process. The study found that The Altered Path programme could contribute towards a growth in intra-personal skills with regard to self-awareness, personal goal setting, spirituality, morals and values, self-esteem and self-regulation (both emotional and cognitive). The result of the intra-personal growth was that the interpersonal skills with regard to communication and helping skills of participants improved. In answer to the research question the finding was made that the intra-personal development positively affected the following dimensions of their self-concept: personal, ideal, cognitive, spiritual, social self and psychological self. In the light hereof the statement can be made that The Altered Path programme seems to have a positive effect on the overall self-concept of the participants. Conscious development of self-knowledge was identified as an element of the programme that could be refined to ensure that all participants develop self-knowledge in the same way during the field study.