JUST how do parents inject a leadership or independent spirit in their children?
Evelyn Maake, a recruitment officer, has a simple answer.
"Be there for your child, or children, more than 100percent," she said this week, in a brief chat about her brainy 10-year-old girl, Pulane, who is due to represent the Johannesburg-based Dominican Convent School in the People to People Leadership Programme in Washington in June 2010.
"I am there for her, spiritually, emotionally, psychologically and academically by taking time off each day to attend to her school work and to encourage her in her extramural activities," Maake said.
"Even when I know that Pulane is naturally talented and has a passion for mathematics and science, I still make an effort to follow her progress.
"Even when she does her homework during the 30 minutes that she waits for me to pick her up from school, I still check and congratulate her. We read together, especially the encyclopedias and newspapers." She is excited about young Pulane's impending adventure.
Primary school head at Dominican Convent School, Dalene Rostovsky, has said Pulane is currently a top five achiever in her grade, and a responsible, self-confident pupil who takes all her duties seriously.
Rostovsky added: "She actively participates in the netball and choir activities and is a real asset to our school. The People to People Leadership Programme will give her a head start to reach her potential as a true leader."