COMMUNITY SAFE PARK
As South Africa embarked on the observance of World Aids Day on 1 December, Loeriesfontein’s community safe park announced that its programme will align with the 2019 theme of World Aids Day, “Communities make a difference”, taking on the call for communities to unite towards the goal of creating an informed and prepared generation.
“The Loeriesfontein Isibindi Safe Park will keep its doors open during the December and January school holiday period and include an AIDS programme which will talk about education and prevention as well as a 16-days-of-activism programme which will talk about domestic violence and other related problems,” explained Marita Ryk-Kammies, Isibindi Project Manager.
Observance of World Aids Day is directly linked to driving a greater understanding, sharing educational information, showing support to people living with HIV, fighting stigma and participating in health activities such as testing for HIV.
When asked why the safe park is open during the festive season, the programme manager explained that children in the community are often left unattended over the holiday period. “Children are not safe out on the streets, so Isibindi gives them a safe place to come to and be looked after, plus they can also learn valuable life lessons from the programmes which we hope will help them make better choices when they are faced with real life situations,” added Marita Ryk-Kammies.
Loeriesfontein Wind Farm funds the social intervention programme conducted through the Isibindi Safe Park project, with a view to benefit the local community by providing access to the services of family-focused professional child and youth care workers offering continuous support to children and families.
• The Joint United Nations Programme estimates that almost 75 million people have become infected with HIV since the start of the epidemic; an estimated 1.7 million new HIV infections globally in 2018 with 770 000 deaths from AIDS-related illnesses.