Initiative tightens family bonds

2019-06-06 06:00
Facilitator at Parent Centre Organisation Noxolo Madlakane addresses the audience. PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

Facilitator at Parent Centre Organisation Noxolo Madlakane addresses the audience. PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

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In their bid to build a cohesive community, parents and learners from Gugulethu converged at a local library on Saturday 1 June to look at social issues affecting children.

The initiative formed part of the provincial department of education’s Personal Mastery Life Skill Programme.

A total of 100 learners from Mseki and Xolani Primary Schools attended the event.

The theme of the day was ‘thetha mama ndimamele’ (mom speak out, I am listening).

Xolile Makutoana, Care and Support assistant from Mseki Primary School, described the event as an engagement between parents and children.

He said they are focusing on challenges that are faced by the teenagers and also try to empower parents on ways to deal with those challenges.

“We are looking at strategic solutions on how to deal with teenagers, particularly when they are reaching their transitional stages. During those stages, boys start to change their voice, smoke and become naughty. While girls become cheeky,” said Makutoana.

He said they want to create a platform where parents and children can share their views and reach a common ground. “We want to break that barrier where parents are scared to communicate with their children. We want them (parents) to be friends with their children and listen to them,” he said.

Makutoana stated that they are working with Gugulethu Children’s Clinic and Parent Centre Organisation to achieve the desired outcomes.

Mseki Primary School deputy principal Xolile Ndlungwana described the programme as educational and supportive.

“The programme assists us to instil discipline among learners,” he said, adding that most of the learners have social problems.

Ndlungwana said teachers are not able to look after all the learners and offer support due to the huge volumes at the local schools.

However, he expressed his disappointment with parents’ poor attendance.

He added that for learners to be successful parents have to support them.

Noxolo Madlakane, a facilitator at Parent Centre Organisation, said their obligation is to assist young parents by educating them on how to balance their studies and parenting. Parent Centre is an organisation that offers parents and caregivers information to nurture children in a positive, healthy and loving environment from pregnancy until the child goes to kindergarten The organisation is based at NY1.

Parent Thenjiwe Zuba described the event as very informative.

“It helps us to build a relationship between a parent and a child,” she said. “They told us that we must not raise our voices when we talk to the children and must speak soft for them to listen,” she said.

Grade 7 learner from Xolani Primary School, Lukhanyo Ngqaneka (12) said: “We were taught about the importance of a parent and a child relationship, where we share our problems with them.”

Ngqaneka vowed to be disciplined and listen to his parents.

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