Saturday was a busy day for youngsters in Mfuleni as community development NGO Afrika Tikkun hosted its Talent and Cultural Day at the in Zolile Malindi Centre. This was the 11th annual instalment where youths between the ages of eight and 18 were given the opportunity to strut their stuff. There was poetry, art exhibition music and of course prize giving for teams and individuals who have excelled in their different codes. Lizo Madinga, Afrika Tikkun’s Cape Town general manager, said the day was a revelation for parents who came to witness the festivities. “For most of these parents, they knew that their children are involved in extra mural activities at this centre but they have never actually watched them. Today they got a chance to see the talent their children posses,” he said.He said that having parents and family members also does wonders for children when they have to perform. “The aim of this event is to nurture the talent of young children. As parents we watch soccer on TV every weekend, but we hardly come to watch our kids, so its great to see parents bonding with their children in this kind of environment,” he said. Afrika Tikkun has three core programmes, namely the early childhood development where the children from 0 to six years old are taken care off. They have a child and youth development programme which provides sports, arts and culture, learning and homework support, life-skills and related interventions for children and youth, tailored for the seven to nine years, 10-13 years, 14-16years and 17-18 years age groups. They also have a youth skills development and placement programme which provides career guidance, job readiness training, entrepreneurial training, job placement and bursaries for further learning.Madinga said that the talent day was a national event for the organisation as their Johannesburg based centres hosted similar events. He urged parents to encourage and support children to participate in extra mural activities as they helped with their academic performance. Khanyiso Arosi, a striker for the Afrika Tikkum soccer team said that he enjoyed the day and was proud to be medal owner. “I enjoyed playing for this team as I get to travel and play with other teams. I love that we also get all that we need because we are supported here,” said the 15-year-old. Another winner on the day was poet Ntando Mbikwana, 13, who took first place with his poem addressing racism. “I feel great to have won especially because I didn’t even have a name for the poem yet. I just felt that I should speak out against racism,” he concluded.