District camp to empower youth

36 to benefit from life-changing event

A DISTRICT youth camp is scheduled to be hosted at Tyhusha along Pierre Dam where Sandile’s Cave is located outside King William’s Town from September 6 to 8.

The department of social development, in conjunction with Buffalo City Metropolitan (BCM), is hosting the event in preparation for the Eastern Cape provincial youth camp which will be held in Port Alfred in October.

Social development official and community development supervisor Nomasomi Soga told the GO! that it’s the first time that such an event would be hosted and it is promised to attract youth from various areas in the metro.

“This is something new and it is aimed to encourage young people to engage in dialogues that will address issues of culture, indigenous knowledge and the revival of ubuntu as it will also focus on building healthy, functioning communities with young people playing a vital and imperative role,” Soga said.

“The district is targeting 36 young people [male and female] between 18 and 24 from six service offices in the metro. They will be equipped by the department and its partners with opportunities for empowerment, skills development, career guidance, promoting safety and healthy lifestyles, as well as leadership building.”

She added that the objectives are to create an environment where young people are guided to enhance their sense of responsibility, to share their views and opinions on social, economic, religious and cultural issues and assist them to develop programmes that will address their challenges.

“The list is endless, such as to link young people to opportunities and to bring awareness about the impact of substance and child abuse.”

According to Soga, the service offices are in East London, Mdantsane 1, Mdantsane 2, King, Zwelitsha and Dimbaza. She added that the youth will be accommodated in King and transported to Tyusha every morning.

The provincial department of sport, recreation, arts and culture official Byron Esterhuizen said the provincial youth camp in Port Alfred was attended each year by 250 young people from around the province.

“It is a national event and we as the province, and the hosts, welcome the youth from all districts within the province to descend on a life-changing experience,” Esterhuizen said.

Breidbach Professionals Netball Club captain Simone Matroos was a youth camp leader during the event in Port Alfred a couple of years back and recommended the camp to all young people.

“It was amazing. Very educational, uplifting and we had so many activities, such as baking, cooking, and participating in fun games. It was also my first time on the back of a horse. I really enjoyed every moment,” Matroos said.

“I strongly recommend every youth [who is] offered the opportunity, to grab it with both hands as it is truly a life-changing opportunity.”

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