‘Dare to dream’, NPO urges youth

2019-09-17 06:01
The Junior Rosa Choir sings at the street concert in Manenberg.PHOTOs: SIPHESIHLE NOTWABAZA

The Junior Rosa Choir sings at the street concert in Manenberg.PHOTOs: SIPHESIHLE NOTWABAZA

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The mood was jovial as young and old enjoyed themselves at the inaugural street concert organised by Cape Cultural Collection (CCC) in Manenberg.

CCC, a registered non-profit organisation (NPO) hosted the event themed “Dare To Dream” on Saturday 7 September at Thames Walk.

CCC describes itself as an organisation that bridges boundaries between cultures and races by means of the performing arts. The event, which was headlined by the junior and senior Rosa Choirs, aimed to bring the community together. The choirs were joined by local poets and artists.

The entertainment-hungry community sang along and danced, and clearly enjoyed themselves.

According to Shireen Mathews, organiser, the event sought to attract the youth and make them see there are alternatives to drugs and gangsterism.

“We wanted to show the kids who are not part of the choir that they should dream big and reach for the stars.”

The other message the concert sought to convey was that gender-based violence should not be tolerated.

She expressed her disappointment with the fact that the event wasn’t supported by the community leaders.

She added the community is fighting drugs, gangsterism and crime and that the solution is them coming together. It includes support from the authorities for these kind of initiatives.

The conductor of the choirs, Janine Parenzee said the concert was a way of bringing the community together and for the youth to be part of something meaningful.

“When the kids see there is stuff to do for them, such as joining a choir, it makes them realise they can dream and make a name for themselves,” Parenzee expressed.

They also wanted to try and get the youth to change their focus and not to only see the negative. “Our children are exposed to a lot of negative things and they can’t help but see it. We want them to see something positive. We want them to rekindle their childhood,” she explained.

She has been involved with the choirs for over a year and say they have performed at a number of events, including a performance at the Castle of Good Hope in town, the Slave Church and at an event in Gugulethu.

The choir not only focuses on music. The members also dance and act.

In an attempt to broaden their horizons, they’ve gone on camps. Some of the members, who come from different areas, have never been outside their neighbourhoods.

“Some of these children have never used something as simple as a shower. So when we take them out, they get to experience new things,” she shared.

One of the residents, Cheryl Williams, commended the organiser for hosting the concert. She said she enjoyed herself and was impressed by the level of talent shown by the youth.

She said women and children are going through a terrible time at the moment and that something to cheer them up was much-needed. “It is a sad story about children and women. They are killed left, right and centre,” she said.

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