Programme provides youth support

South Africa - Cape Town - 20 February 2020 Cape Town - The official opening of the legislature and the premiers State of the Province Address (Sopa) in Rocklands Civic Centre in Mitchells Plain.While much of the focus in the Western Cape government has been over the 'Safety Plan', opposition parties within the provincial legislature say Premier Alan Winde has slipped up on housing in his drive to combat violent crime in the Western Cape. Opposition parties within the Western Cape provincial legislature don't believe premier Alan Winde fulfilled some of the promises he made during his 2019 State of Province Address. But while there have been efforts to make the province safer, Photographer Ayanda Ndamane /African News Agency(ANA)

A hundred Mitchell’s Plain matriculants of the class of 2019 participated in a three-day “leadership and opportunities youth outreach programme” during which they engaged with Premier Alan Winde, Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz and member of the provincial legislature Ricardo MacKenzie about entrepreneurship, vision and opportunities for young people.

The programme held at Oppiesee Cultural Centre, in Melkbosstrand, started on Monday February 24 and ended Wednesday February 26, days after Mr Winde’s State of the Province Address at Rocklands civic centre on Thursday February 20.

Many of the youth attended the debate on his speech the next day.

Deyton Davids, from Woodlands, said he was keen to see the debate and how politicians viewed youth and their role in society.

Sergio Lewis, from Westridge, said he wanted to engage with those in authority in a “meaningful way”.

Mr Fritz said the key message was that safety was everyone’s responsibility and that alternatives to crime and violence were access to opportunities.

“The Youth Outreach programme aims to provide support, inspiration and encouragement to participants to pursue opportunities in further education, skills development and work,” he said.

The programme targeted those who matriculated in 2019 and who were not employed, furthering their education or in training.

Its purpose was to promote safety excellence by raising awareness of young people’s safety concerns and helping them to develop the necessary leadership to play an active role in overcoming the adversity they face.

Sessions included personal branding, safety awareness and information on the Chrysalis Academy.

“More than anything, the youth of South Africa are hungry for opportunities. This programme gives young people who most need it, the tools and encouragement to create and pursue opportunities that will improve their lives, in a safe space. As the Western Cape Government, we want to work with young people so that they can grow into successful adults, who are able to contribute towards a safer society in the future,” said Mr Winde.