Youth Day, kids’ play

2018-06-19 06:01
The seven-year-old Daschund Oscar was among those who benefited from physical activities on Youth Day, with owner Monita Yousef, watching on.PHOTO: luvuyo Mjekula

The seven-year-old Daschund Oscar was among those who benefited from physical activities on Youth Day, with owner Monita Yousef, watching on.PHOTO: luvuyo Mjekula

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The streets of Woodstock came alive with young and old people playing sport and games in celebration of Youth Day on Saturday 16 June.

The event took place in Clyde and Plein streets, in front of the town hall. Activities included five-a-side soccer, netball, board games, and ballroom dance, among others.

The celebration was dubbed Safe PlayStreets, an initiative of Western Cape on Wellness (WOW!), linked to the provincial health department.

The aim was to bring the community together, say the City of Cape Town and its partners – department of sports and recreation, WOW!, Open Streets, Woodstock Library, the police, residents’ associations and various religious organisations including Baptist, New Apostolic and Grace Chapel churches.

According to Dr Frederick Marais from WOW!, the programme is driven by the provincial government and seeks to bring the community together and promote wellness and a healthy lifestyle.

“It becomes a play zone for people to just have fun, to move, and through that they feel good, and feeling good adds to emotional wellbeing.”

Marais explains that portable equipment such as hula hoops, soccer balls and board games were made available, and people were spoiled for choice.

Bulelani Jwampini, the City’s head health inspector, used the opportunity to inform young people about the dangers of smoking. He shared information with the youngsters, through pamphlets and photographs depicting healthy and unhealthy lungs. “The response was interesting because some appeared not to know the dangers that come with the habit, saying they smoke to be cool,” said Jwampini.

Lihle Hlomela, a play leader from the City, felt the event kept the youth away from bad habits. “It gave them a sense of belonging,” Hlomela said.

Pastor Angeline Tait from Grace Chapel Christian Church, said: “We are so excited to join the community of Woodstock for a good relationship, bringing young and old people from all walks of life together. It’s nice to see that we as a community can come together; have fun together. This is the time for the next generation; we are raising young men and women in the church.”

Marais said it was the first time the event was held in Woodstock, having had it in Gugulethu twice before, and hoped Bonteheuwel would be the next stop as part of Mandela Day celebrations.

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