It is a good thing to hear how organisations are working and implementing ideas in the development of communities. Yes, as they say, these organisations should practise what they preach. This was the case last Wednesday in Epworth, when Justice for Children Trust (JCT) hosted a child abuse awareness sports tournament at Makomo Primary School in Epworth.
The event ran under the theme “To Raise Awareness of Child Abuse Through Sport”, with special emphasis on the girl child and students took part in sporting disciplines such as soccer, netball and volleyball.
In an interview JCT programmes coordinator Chinga Govhati said their organisation was implementing a project called “Promoting the right to education for girls in Epworth” which is being supported by IM-Swedish Development Partner.
“The aim is to use the law to promote the girl child inclusion through provision of legal services in cases such as children being disinherited by relatives, parents failing to provide for their children when they are able, encouraging parents to register their children upon birth and raising awareness on child abuse, especially child marriages,” she said.
She said the mentioned issues affect children negatively, resulting in them dropping out of school.
“The use of sports is meant to provide the necessary recreation whilst children learn and thereby preventing them from committing offences and making them stay in schools,” she said.
Sport and Recreation Minister Makhosini Hlongwane said the Government is clear of the role of sport in promoting and strengthening community spirit, peace, healthy living, livelihoods, unity and solidarity.
“Every day, in every country, children suffer and witness violence. Violence against children cuts across boundaries of culture, race class, and ethnic origin, and occurs in many different settings.
Daily, repeated acts of violence and abuse have several repercussions in the lives of children and it is our task to ensure that children are protected against all forms of violence.
While some violence is unexpected
and isolated, most violent acts against children are carried out by people they know and should be able to trust: parents, guardian and extended family members,” he said.
He said main-streaming of sport ensures equal involvement of both boys and girls and keeps them busy thereby reducing instances of abuse of girls and child marriages in communities.
The tournament was sponsored by JCT in partnership with IM Sweden.