The City of Joburg’s pro-poor stance has resulted in it pouring resources into the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Africa (BGCSA), which is a registered non-profit organisation
The BGCSA provides facility-based programmes for learners from grades R to 12 during non-school hours. It facilitates programmes every day after school, on weekends and during school holidays.
BGCSA provides important daily programmes and activities for children and teenagers such as homework help and tutoring, career guidance, leadership, community service and information technology skills.
It also offers sports programmes such as soccer, basketball and netball, and arts and culture programmes such as marimba, dance and drama. It has three established Clubs based in Bertrams, Pimville and Protea Glen. Collectively, BGCSA serves over 1 200 youth annually and indirectly more than 5 000 family members.
The City of Joburg is a pro-poor government that supports programmes that are aimed at addressing inequality and poverty. When children and teenagers are idle, they are vulnerable to being influenced by substance abuse and get involved in wrong activities, says Member of the Mayoral Committee for Community Development Cllr Nonhlanhla Sifumba.
“The City proudly supports the work done by the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Africa because it meets young people’s interests and keeps them safe during non-school hours,” says MMC Sifumba.
Recent alumnus Nqobile Ngwenya shares that “the programme that stands out for me is dance, because I was able to take out my frustrations”.
Rony Dube, another alumnus, shared: “It created a distance between me and the wrongdoings. As a Club Member, you have to be an example.”
Both Ngwenya and Dube, and others, are now permanently employed or studying as a result of their experience at their local Boys & Girls Club.
The Pimville and Bertrams clubs are housed at City of Joburg sports and recreation facilities. The City and BGCSA want to grow their relationship to serve new communities. Recently, the BGCSA in partnership with the City began talks to expend the programme to Alexandra Township.
The City of Joburg remains one of BGCSA’s longest standing partners and critical to the growth of the Boys & Girls Club model in South Africa. The relationship has been cemented over the years, and now together, BGCSA and the City aim to open 10 sites by 2020.