A hiking group conceived on the mountains of Cape Town has enticed young professionals from different walks of life, seeking a place to meet, network, share, inspire and be inspired outside of the conventional ideas of how young professionals spend their down time around Cape Town. Bantu Hikers is a group centered around celebrating people, promoting a healthy lifestyle and immersing in the beauty of nature.
It took Mpho Sekwele along with her close friend Khanya Sosibo , the founders of the group, to realise how fulfilling hiking is after being introduced to the many hiking routes, picturesque views around Cape Town. Their love for the mountains manifested into a hiking group where they could share the rewards of hiking with friends and friends of friends, especially those who had never imagined being able to walk up a mountain, never mind enjoy it. The group explored different hiking routes mostly around the Cape every two weeks with prospects of exploring hiking trails beyond the borders of South Africa.
Many hiking novices who partake in the hikes concede that hiking not only tests your physical fitness but also stretches your mental tenacity. After all, it takes some doing to summit a mountain that towers 2km above sea level. Bantu Hikers enjoys introducing people who have never hiked, and whose perception of hiking proves to be contrary to the experience.
A blissful consequence of the meaningful exchanges and conversations enjoyed during the hikes gave life to an initiative aimed at exposing young people to hiking and using the exercise to illustrate vividly the course of life. Bantu Hikers uses the mountain as a classroom, allowing professionals to share their experiences through mentoring. Students, mainly those in their penultimate year of study are lead on hiking trips while provided with support and career guidance. There is nothing quite like life 101 lessons while negotiating your way up a mountain, cheering on your friends and taking in the beauty of your surroundings. Hiking provides one with a different perspective, a different angle on life as it were. It is on this premise that hiking and mentoring are in song.
From what may have seemed like an insignificant idea of sharing the love of nature with others and inspiring young people to feel a part of this environment, it is clear to see that it all started with one step. We are all challenged, inspired and tested but most of all, we prove to ourselves and others that anything is possible.
Bantu Hikers, it starts with one step.