CAPE TOWN – More than 555 families in 35 communities in the city of Cape Town will have benefited from the City’s Strengthening Families programme by the end of June. This programme is part of the broader Substance Abuse programme of the cuty’s Social and Early Childhood development Department.

“It is internationally recognized and has been found to significantly reduce problem behaviours, delinquency and substance abuse in children and to improve social competencies and school performance. It also improve parenting skills,: said JP Smith, Mayco member for safety and security and social services.

The pilot phase was lunched 2013, when 63 families from Scottsdene, Manenberg, Lavender Hill and Bonteheuwel attended the eight-week course featuring topics like open pressure, parenting skills and respect.

By the end of June, this programme will have expanded to areas such as Elsies River, Bonteheuwel, Bishop Lavis, Valhalia Park Ravensmead, Delf, Scottsdene, Scottsville, Fisantekraal, Morningstars, Lavender Hill, Ocean View, Retreat, Strandfontein, Wesbank, Kleinvlei, Macassar, Happy Vally, Lwandle, Sir Lowry’s Pass, Athlone, Heideveld, Menenberg, Nyanga, Langa, Athalntis, Joe Slovo (Milnerton), Dunoon, Hout Bay, Tafelsig, Philippi, Lentegeur, Woodlands, Brown’s Farm and Khayelitsha. This year alone the programme is reaching 335 children and 246 parents while also creating temporary employment opportunities through the Expanded Public Works programme (EPWP) for 195 of those.

The programme uses practical and interactive methods to broach topics like love and limits, house rules, encouraging good behavior, and consequences. It also teaches children how to have goals and dreams, how to appreciate their parents, how to deal with stress and how to resist peer pressure and to associate themselves with good friends. “It takes courage to sign up for a programme like this and I commend the more than 500 families that have taken the journey with us thus far” said Smith.


PHOTO: City of Cape Town building. Peter Okafor ExpressCapetown.


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