Care centre opens for whole family

2015-05-05 06:00
These containers will make up the new care centre in Ocean View. 

PHOTO: 
MONIQUE DUVAL

These containers will make up the new care centre in Ocean View. PHOTO: MONIQUE DUVAL

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Ocean View residents buzzed with excitement at the opening of a new care centre yesterday.

Situated on the vacant property behind the civic centre, the new centre comprises various containers where residents can go for help.

The new centre is aimed at creating a safe place where people can get the help they need for various social problems.

Funded by the mayor’s urban regeneration programme (Murp), the centre will offer a variety of services including drug counselling for outpatients, parental guidance classes, a crèche and a coffee shop.

Marti Weddepohl from Mercy Network gave the People’s Post a sneak peak of the new centre last week.

She explained it would be run by volunteers. The layout has been designed by an architect to ensure the containers are located in the best place for service delivery.

The new centre will also accommodate a local school and four containers have been allocated to it.

Earlier this year Johann Kikillus established the school to assist children at risk and those who cannot afford the fees of crèches in Ocean View.

For the school, the centre would also have an Astroturf field and play equipment.

In addition, a food garden is planned for the site.

At the entrance of the centre will be a coffee shop. Weddepohl said they hoped this would become a place where residents needing help could come and find assistance in a safe and relaxed atmosphere.

“What often happens is people do not know where to come for help. With the coffee shop we hope to create a safe and inviting space where someone in need can come and talk to someone,” she says.

With a range of social services in close proximity, Weddepohl said people would not have to go far.

Commenting on the services, Weddepohl said Ocean View was better off than some communities on the Cape Flats, but there was a need to restore the social fabric of the mountainside community.

For this reason, while the centre will offer a variety of services, they will not deal only with individuals.

“Let’s say someone comes in because there is a problem with the children. These social problems do not happen in isolation and are often a symptom of what is happening in the family. Our plan is to look at the whole situation and assist the whole family,” she says.

Due to the location of the centre, Weddepohl says they are investigating technologically savvy ways of securing the premises. They would also like to use solar power to meet its energy needs.

V

If you would like to assist the centre, email mercy­net.1@gmail.com

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