18 June 2019

South Africa: Not Much to Celebrate On Youth Day 2019, Say Young People Battling Crime and Unemployment


Civil society coalition #UniteBehind celebrated Youth Day by bringing together kids from low-income communities for fun, games and an opportunity to escape the 'unsafe' and 'oppressive' environments in which they live. The coalition says there's still a lot to do before the youth of this country are truly free.

"Inequality in society is most felt by kids in black working-class communities," said Zelda Holtzman, a member of the organising secretariat for #UniteBehind.

In celebration of Youth Day, observed on 17 June, civil society coalition #UniteBehind, alongside its affiliates, organised a sports day at Golders Green, a sports field in Woodstock, Cape Town.

The day brought together young people from various majority low-income communities including Khayelitsha, Elsies River and Woodstock to play netball and soccer.

Zelda Holtzman says children need safe spaces where they can achieve their potential. (Photo: Sandisiwe Shoba)

Holtzman said the communities many of the children come from do not have adequate spaces for recreational activities.

"Young people, as you can see around us, are hungry for facilities, just to be young people and to exercise that energy. When they arrived here, they were excited that we had soccer balls."

She said that children from these communities don't...

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