Crime disrupts youth programme

2019-07-04 06:01
Themba Maseti from LoveLife giving a talk during the Community Safety Religious School Holiday Programme.

Themba Maseti from LoveLife giving a talk during the Community Safety Religious School Holiday Programme.

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Acommunity safety religious School holiday programme presented by Arise and Shine Ministries was cut short when the hall they use was broken into in the early hours of Friday 28 June.

The programme is meant to keep children off the streets during school holidays and teach them about staying away from crime and substance abuse.

The programme started on Tuesday 25 June at the OR Tambo Community Hall in Site C facilitated by the church which is based in Khayelitsha.

One of the organisers, Ethel Sobantu-Nonjola said they are deeply saddened by what happened. The criminals broke into the hall to try and steal the stuff they use in the programme.

“I’m really disappointed by what happened here because those criminals were hoping to steal the stoves and pots we use to cook for the children but managed to steal taps and a geyser,” she said.

She said the programme aims to bring change in the community and equip children but some criminals saw an opportunity to steal. Sobantu-Nonjola said the children could not have breakfast on Friday morning because they had to wait for the police to come.

However, she said the incident won’t deter them in what they want to achieve.

Facilitator Yolisa Benya said during the programme they invite different stakeholders who give talks to the children about abuse, crime, substance abuse.

“The community loves the fact that there are people who are trying to bring change and that their children are in a safe place during school holidays,” she said. The children become very excited before the start of each day because they find them waiting outside the hall. She added that they have been hosting the programme for a while and they will continue to do so.

Anam Wambi (11) said he learned a lot about abuse and the consequences of crime and drugs.

Ibanathi Njokwana (17) said the programme helps children from the area to come off the streets which is a good thing. “I’m happy to be here and to see boys my age because they are the ones that get involved in crime,” she said.

The programme concluded on Monday 1 July.

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