Youth day highlights respect

2019-06-25 06:00
Young biker-wanna-bes ready to be shown the ropes. PHOTOS: siphesihle notwabaza

Young biker-wanna-bes ready to be shown the ropes. PHOTOS: siphesihle notwabaza

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Respect, health and safety were the buzz words at this year’s youth day celebration held at the Weltevreden Recreation Centre on Monday last week.

The event was organised by the Weltevreden Community Workers For Seniors and Children.

To make it a success, the club worked with other community organisations such as Coot Block Community Safety Forum and Vyvan Bean who owns Mr Bs Cycles Shop. The shop repairs and sells bicycles but also offers training to the youth on how to ride bicycles.

Coordinator Heather Fortuin said she is passionate about community development and that is why she always hosts the event annually.

According to her, youth is very important in any community and they need to be kept busy so that they can forget about all the bad things such as crime.

“We do this event every year. We want our children to have fun and interact with each other and also learn something,” Fortuin explained her motive.

Her plea is for the community leaders to show support by donating anything that could be useful in events like these.

She revealed she has been working for the community for more than 10 years but the council never supports her initiatives.

“I have a certificate that I was given by the Democratic Alliance for working in the community. That shows that I have an impact in the community,” she explained.

The event was a fusion of games and bicycles rides with supervision from Bean for those who needed some coaching. For Bean, working with the youth is a passion and his way of giving back to the community. He gave the youngsters some lessons and shared his knowledge of bicycles.

“I am here to teach them about the safety aspect of bicycles like if you do not have a helmet, you cannot ride,” he explained.

He has been doing this type of work for more than seven years and said that riding bicycles is fun but can also help improve one’s health.

“I always tell people that your health is your wealth. If you can, ride for at least 10 minutes and that will help you in terms of health,” he said.

Coot Block chairperson Brenda Cooper said they got involved in the event because they are passionate about youth development and community safety.

“I feel very excited that we can assist the youth. Our focus is to keep them off the streets and events like this one help in that regard,” said Cooper.

She said fun and games are good tools to attract the youth and her wish was for the event to grow and become bigger.

Ubaydullah Petersen (9) is one of the many jovial youngsters who were having a good time. He said he wants to thank the team that organised the event and that they should carry on doing these types of events.

“I feel very good and I enjoy bicycles. All I want to say is thank you for doing this for us,” expressed Ubaydullah.

He said he is proud to be a Mitchell’s Plain boy and that when he finishes school he wants to be a big football star who will represent not just Rocklands but the whole town.

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