Officials cross over to help kids get to school safely

2017-06-27 06:01
PR councillor Washiela Harris and ward 75 councillor Joan Woodman.

PR councillor Washiela Harris and ward 75 councillor Joan Woodman.

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A provincial minister joined volunteers last week to keep children safe on their way to school.

Last week, provincial minister of community safety Dan Plato joined volunteers in Woodlands.

The volunteers walk alongside schoolchildren to get them to school safely as part of Plato’s walking bus initiative.

The initiative was first launched in the Western Cape in March last year. Plato launched the first walking bus in Mitchell’s Plain in May last year.

Since then 55 areas have been included by the department, with volunteers helping between 75 and 200 schoolchildren daily.

They recently even expanded the idea to neighbourhoods in the southern Cape.

The walking bus initiative aims to create a safe and supervised route for learners to and from school every day with the commitment and involvement of residents.

The initiative is headed by Plato and supported by ward councillors, the education department, the Safer Schools programme, many primary and high schools, police, City of Cape Town Traffic and Law Enforcement, community policing forums, neighbourhood watches, religious institutions, parents and concerned residents.

On Tuesday last week, 75 residents came out with Plato in support of the walking bus initiative.

“With the ongoing crime, gangsterism and so many young children going missing and being abducted, I supported the initiative to bring about awareness within the community,” said ward 75 councillor Joan Woodman on Tuesday.

She added the initiative reiterated the value statement “Your child, is my child.”

“The residents and community of ward 75 are working together as a unit to bring back values and say ‘Enough is enough’ as we take to the streets and keep our children safe by walking them to school.

“I trust that this initiative will grow from strength to strength,” she said.

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