Tikkun children clean the streets of their beloved Alex

Some of the Afrika Tikkun children and youth who volunteered to clean the streets of Alex. Photo: Supplied

 

Pupils from Afrika Tikkun’s Child and Youth Development (CYD) programme, some of them as young as 10 years, took it upon themselves to clean “our beloved” Alexandra.

Donning gloves and masks, the children left the comfort of their classrooms for the filth-infested and smelly streets of their Kasi in a campaign known as ‘Make It Clean’, which is designed to make the streets a bit more habitable.

The campaign was carried out on 2 July and covered the area between Rev Same Buti and Joe Nhlanhla streets from 16th to 18th avenues.

The kind of filth that the children and youth from the Afrika Tikkun confronted in the streets of Alex. Photo: Supplied

“Safety and sanitation have been a major problem in our country but no one understands how horrible it is in my community,” said Kabelo Mashabela, one of the CYD pupils.

“I live in this beloved oldest township in South Africa and indeed I ought to embrace it. But how do I do so if I can’t even breathe fresh, clean air for 5 minutes?

“Times are changing. Technology is growing rapidly, but where is the change in my community? It is so bad, you would think we live next to mine dumps.”

Mashabela said they, as children and youth, wanted to take a lead in cleaning their community and were prepared to stand up and do it for themselves as no one will do it for them. This was the agreement between the responsible boys and girls of Alex who access Child and Youth Development services from Afrika Tikkun.

Afrika Tikkun is an organisation whose vision is ‘today’s people become tomorrow’s productive citizens’ and is determined to galvanise the children and youth for the achievement of that vision.

“We have never seen young people cleaning the streets and I bet we are the first. Cleaning has never been this exciting. Today was hard work with instant benefits that will last for a life time. We are so proud of ourselves,” Mashabela said on behalf his fellow pupils.

The kind of filthy that the children and youth from the Afrika Tikkun found in the streets of Alex. Photo: Supplied

CYD facilitator Carol Moshuwe said one of the outcomes of the programme was to ensure that pupils developed their leadership potential.

“We mentor them to have courage and self-confidence, to learn to take responsibility and to be accountable for their actions and future.

“We encourage them to be active citizens. We want to thank every community member who encouraged and helped us during our Make It Clean campaign.

“We also want to extend our heartfelt gratitude to the Ward 116 Councillor [Adolf] Marema for contributing to the success of this campaign,” Moshuwe said.

How do you like the children cleaning the streets? Post your comments on the Alex News Facebook page

  AUTHOR
Sipho Siso

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