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A better life beckons

Last month the El Theos Street Children Project, in partnership with the Parow Baptist Church, opened a drop-in centre for street children in Parow.

The Voortrekker Road Corridor Improvement District (VRCID) Social Development supports this initiative, which is the result of the Western Cape Parow Street Children Subforum, chaired and facilitated by Wilma Piek.

“We want to develop each child, reunite them with their family and get those who need it, into rehab,” says Piek, the VRCID social development manager. She says because street children were identified as a need, they were able to create the drop-in centre.

The centre offers a programme for street children on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 08:00 to 13:00 at the church. Here the children have access to warm meals, a place to bathe, and training in basic literacy, maths and life skills.

According to Piek, the project is in the beginning phase and they’re trying to define their needs. “We visited another centre in Somerset West and realised our current programme needs to be revised and more recreational activities are needed,” she says.

The children are aged between eight and 18 years and the facilitators separate the younger children from the older ones. The main aim is to get the children back into school. Piek says they are appealing to the community for assistance and to give children food in a responsible manner. “We are in need of any volunteers, food, clothing, teachers, dance lessons, stationery, a CD player, books, toys, games and anything that can keep the children busy,” says Piek.

The goal is to supply an alternative to activities on the street and give them a chance to be children again.

To assist, contact Wilma on 083 294 3667 or email Wilma.Piek@vrcid.co.za.

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