Young people in the Free State say the youth of 1976 opened doors for them and they will do everything in their power to take advantage of opportunities available for them.

They visited the Naval Hill Game Reserve in Bloemfontein to celebrate Youth Day on Sunday.

Naval Hill is known for its beautiful view of the City of Roses and its historical significance with one of the largest  statues of Nelson Mandela towering over Bloemfontein.

Young people say the sacrifices of the 1976 youth have influenced them to face today’s challenges.

“My responsibility today, I think, is to take education more seriously because the youth of 1976 fought for us to have equal rights and have better education and choose the language we want to be taught in.”

“Well, they made opportunities for us today to study what we want and where we want. And they also fought for equal rights, which we can use to our advantage to date and they also inspired the youth of today to fight for what we think is right. I appreciate what they did for us and they completely changed the world for us to make it a better place.”

Meanwhile, the youth of Soweto have complained about the lack of job opportunities.

They say they went to school to try and better their lives.

However, they are struggling to find employment.

“We, as the youth of today, we don’t see the freedoms that those youth of 76 fought for. We still have too much unemployment. If we can actually see everything coming to the youth; better jobs, unemployment rate coming down, then I would say that June 16 – what they fought for – we can actually see it,” says one youth.

“We don’t have jobs. Each and everyday, you have to sell something so that you have something to eat. You have to have a proper job to have something to put on the table to eat.”

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