Phakama members have no place to practice

Co-founder of Phakama Youth Group Ncedo Bhongoza standing on the site where the shack was.
Co-founder of Phakama Youth Group Ncedo Bhongoza standing on the site where the shack was.

Phakama Youth Group members in Browns Farm, Philippi, were left stranded after the owner of the shack they used for practicing destroyed it and took the building material.

Just a month ago members of the organisation were pleading for funds to buy uniform and equipment (“Youth group pleads for funds”, City Vision, 18 July).

Co-founder of the organisation Ncedo Bhongoza said they desperately need a place to practice. He said they are pleading to anyone that can assist them with material so that they can build their own place to practice.

Phakama is a non-government organisation which empowers young children with various skills. It also assists them to stay away from bad activities and encourages them to focus on their studies.

“A fortnight ago the owner came and destroy the shack and took all the building material. Now, we are practicing in another shack which was a shebeen. The owner stopped selling alcohol a long time ago but it still has a pool table inside which makes it difficult for them because they are always chasing people away when they playing pool ,” he said.

Bhongoza said they are practicing from Mondays to Thursdays only. “We agreed that we will practice during the week, then on weekends, we give the space to the people using the pool table. So as from Friday to Sunday we don’t practice,” he stated. He said he is concerned about the children that they will go back to the street and doing bad habits. “In this area, we have a challenge of drug abuse, gangsterism and teenage pregnancy. And by allowing these children to go back to the streets we will end up losing them,” said Bhongoza. The group has 30 members aged seven to 16.

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