Youth of the District gathered at Ipopeng One-Stop Centre today to deliberate issues in what we call “Youth Parliament”. CDM brought together young people from different backgrounds and formations to debate and resolve on their special needs; and identify various intervention areas including education and training, youth health, economic development; arts, sports and recreation as well as the capacity building of youth structures like the youth council. This programme is one of the activities that are managed by the Speaker of the Council, Cllr Maria Lekganyane who was there assisting the “chair” of the day to manage the debates.
CDM has worked with various youth formations and ensure that it is equal to the task of advocating and lobbying for the empowerment and development of young people. Collectively we should continue to support and ensure that the District Youth Council is optimally functional so that, together, we can successfully respond to the imminent contemporary needs of youth.
“As the district municipality, we appreciate the fact that Capricorn is home to young people who are dynamic, innovative and driven. We also appreciate the fact that with 75% of our district population being youth, it is important that our programmes are deliberately aimed at supporting and empowering this segment of the population. In order to respond to the issues of youth development more effectively, a study was conducted in the last few years ago, aimed at generating baseline information regarding youth services, needs, trends and patterns within Capricorn District” Speaker of CDM Council, Cllr Lekganyane said.
This crucial study provided us with the necessary insight into experiences; challenges, successes and opportunities of young people in the Capricorn district, and was thus used as a baseline for planning for youth development. The findings of this study pointed to skills development, education, crime, alcohol and drug abuse, teenage pregnancies, HIV/Aids, job creation and leadership development as key challenges facing this section of our society.
These are some of the topics that were debated and agreed on. They are high-impact programmes aimed at skills development and job creation to ensure the effective participation of our young people in the socio-economic and political discourse of our district and beyond. The parliament also looked into ensuring that we encourage the spirit of volunteerism for young people to develop pride in serving their communities. “Young people must in line with the theme of this year ensure that they participate actively in service delivery processes, therefore contributing to the vision of Youth Moving South Africa forward” these are words that came from the Acting Executive Mayor, Councillor Mahlo.