As part of their practical assignment, third-year child and youth development students from DUT hosted a community outreach project on Friday, 7 September, where street children who frequent Umthombo Street Children and I Care hope centre were invited to a fun-filled day at the YMCA hall.
Third-year child and youth development student Vatiswa Ntombela said that street kids are infamous for being rascals who leave their homes in pursuit of independence, and without considering to understand why they run away from their homes, society quickly shuns these children. “With this initiative, we are hoping to uplift and empower the youngsters and remind them that they matter and life can still be better,” she explained.
The students, together with their lecturer Octavia Mthimkhulu, facilitated different sports to be played at the event, an activity the youngsters enjoyed thoroughly. At the end of the function, the kids were given medals that were sponsored by the Department of Sports and Recreation.
Child and youth development Lecturer Octavia Mthimkhulu said this project taught the DUT students to plan events independently and promoted team work. “Students have been very dedicated and showed enthusiasm in the planning of the event. The students raised funds to buy food and collaborated with a few sponsors to make the event a success. I am thankful that this day became a success, the students now know what to expect in the workplace,” she said.
Mthimkhulu is hoping that the community outreach project becomes an annual event.
— Nomvula Sikakane
Caption: DUT child and youth development third-year students having some fun with kids from Umthombo Street Children and I CARE hope centre at the YMCA hall.