Philippi based NGO Complete Life Centre has taken upon itself the daunting task of empowering young people with life changing skills and helping them make wise life choices.
The organisation has vowed to work tirelessly to ensure that the youth are not lured into a life of drug abuse and gangsterism.
Founder and director of Complete Life Centre, Anele Heli, said he realised that young people were joining gangs because they had no extramural activities after school and others lacked role models in their communities.
The main aim of the organisation is to provide proper guidance and mentorship. And it also seeks to create a spirit of brotherhood and sisterhood among the youth who come from various communities.
He said in the past few years young people who live in Samora Machel and those who live in Philippi had been fighting with each other.
He said after seeing young people carrying pangas and knives and stabbing each other for no reason and ruining their future prospects, he felt compelled to establish the organisation to keep them from such unholy activities.
“I have been disturbed by the statistic claiming that Nyanga is the murder capital of South Africa. Therefore, I decided to take a stand and play my role in turning things around. We have been getting great assistance from Nyanga Police Station. As much as the police are working hard to get rid of the drug supply, they need us as well. As we all know that should there be a supply it’s because there is a demand. We aim to show direction to the youngsters and help them acknowledge their true identity,” he said.
He said growing up in Nyanga and New Crossroad where gangsterism and crime is rife had not been an easy life experience and he understands precisely the challenges facing the current youth.
The-30-year-old budding businessman said they provide workshops, guidance, mentorship, family counselling and assist the youth with their school work.
He said they have after school programmes at Bongolwethu, Masivuke and Siyazingisa primary schools and Mandela High School.
He said since they established the organisation in 2015, they have hosted various events and the aim was to create cohesion among the youth.
He adds that this year they are planning to visit old age homes and elderly people in the community and lend a helping hand.
He said they are delighted that parents in the community have shown a great interest to be part of the organisation because it means that the work they are doing is making a meaningful contribution.
He said the harsh reality was that young people are fascinated by the lavish lifestyle of gangsters and many tend to be tempted to follow their wrong path. However, he said the reality is that they do not understand the real consequences of being a gangster.
The organisation plans to award pupils who are part of the organisation in every semester with certificates when they have done exceptionally well in their school work.
He said during the school holidays they plan to place the pupils at various companies to job shadow so they can gain work experience.
However, he said funding and lack of resources are some of the main challenges they are battling with.
Call Mr Heli on 073 350 4171 if you can help.