Partnership to keep kids in school, out of prison

2019-07-23 06:25
Kleinberg Primary School learners were intrigued by a workshop hosted by Ocean View police and Second Chances Outreach.

Kleinberg Primary School learners were intrigued by a workshop hosted by Ocean View police and Second Chances Outreach.

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With the aim to serve the community and keep its children out of trouble, Second Chances Outreach, non-profit organisation teamed up with Ocean View police to deliver important messages to learners at schools in the area.

From Monday 15 to Tuesday 16 July, William Cupido of Second Chances Outreach was joined by Sergeant Riedewaan Isaacs to host crime prevention programmes at Marine and Kleinberg Primary schools in Ocean View.

The outreach works with several schools, churches and centres across the False Bay and Retreat areas to uplift the community, steer residents away from social ills and to keep children in schools and off the streets. “We did a drug and gang awareness programme at Marine Primary School where 200 learners attended two sessions to explain that drugs are dangerous for them and that they should focus on their schoolwork, and not drugs,” said Isaacs.

Cupido began his partnership with the police after turning his own life around, transforming himself from being a drug addict to a motivational speaker. He was exceptionally happy with the response from the learners at the schools where he spoke last week.

Cupido said: “I also started at their ages, I started experimenting with the dagga and then heavier drugs.

“And since I started at their age, I want to help them to lead better lives. At one of the schools, they didn’t want me to stop my talk during lunch because they were so interested in what I had to say. Right through their break time, they wanted me to talk to them,” he said.

Isaacs made special mention of the topic of gangs and elaborated on the important information imparted on learners regarding gang affiliation. He explained that gangs usually offer learners money and airtime, under the pretence of wanting to help, but in fact, the acceptance of gifts implies an affiliation with the gang.

“They learned that drugs are dangerous for them and it destroys lives. They also learned not to accept any gifts from strangers and gangs,” he said, adding that an emphasis was placed on pursuing a career.

Cupido said there is still hope for learners who do fall prey to drug usage and gangs. “When the police have a kid who they want to keep out of prison then they send them to do programmes with me. We still want to explore what we can do for these kids. We need the government to also come out and help keep these kids safe.”

He concluded by saying he wants to work with high school learners too, and offered advice to the young learners.

He said: “You must be a family at school and the bullying must stop.”

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