Workshop that helps open youth

2017-02-23 06:00
Siyabulela Thixo Project in partnership with Violence Prevention through Urban Upgrading (VPUU) and Salesians Life Choices are holding a workshop with youth, in Khayelitsha. PHOTO: Mbongiseni MASEKO

Siyabulela Thixo Project in partnership with Violence Prevention through Urban Upgrading (VPUU) and Salesians Life Choices are holding a workshop with youth, in Khayelitsha. PHOTO: Mbongiseni MASEKO

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About 30 youths, some of whom are former drug addicts and ex-offenders are attending a seven week long workshop which aims to dissuade them from falling back on their old ways again.

The workshop which started last week, is organised by the Siyabulela Thixo Project in partnership with Violence Prevention through Urban Upgrading (VPUU) and Salesians Life Choices.

They run it at Grassroots Centre, in Harare.

Peggy Mpangela of Siyabulela Thixo Project said the event intends to change the mindset of the youth so they will be able to lead positive lives.

“We are giving them a platform where they can reflect on their past and find ways to change for better.

We need to ensure that they get stronger so they will not go back to their old ways. Most of them already know what they want to do in life. They are getting more comfortable about the decisions they took to change,” Mpalala said.

Buntu Ngunjana, another member of Siyabulela Thixo and a former professional soccer player, said some of the youth were school drop-outs and some were known former street thugs.

“We are appealing to anyone who can help us, because we dig from our own pockets for everything that we do for the project. We have about 800 youths in our books from the area and other townships,” Ngunjana said.

Violet Majola, also a member of the project said the workshop is also going to help prepare the youth for being employable.

Majola said they are encouraging the youth to register in the database of the City of Cape Town for those who wish to get employment.

Lebohang Elliot, 27, said he was happy to be part of the workshop and that it was helpful.

“I would like to thank the organisers for the workshop. It is really providing us with information on how to see life in a positive way. I am a former drug edict and I used to do street robberies. I served time in Pollsmoor Prison for robbing learners on the street with my friends about eight years ago. I have since changed my ways,” Elliott said.

Nolly Kwayimani, family affairs facilitator for Salesians Life Choices, said the workshop is much needed by the youth and it will be their guidance going forward.

“It is for their self development and it will help them to be resilient and be able to face challenges that will come their way. I have noticed that there is a lot of shift in their mentality. At first they were full of doubts, but now they are responding positively.

It is amazing to see males in particular opening up and saying they actually need help,” Kwayimani said.

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