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The City of Cape Town’s Sport, Recreation and Amenities Department has committed over 80 staff members and millions of rands to provide recreation programmes for young and old. This investment forms part of the Department’s new Policy on Recreation Programmes which was adopted at the last City Council meeting. Read more below:

The importance of sport and recreational opportunities in building healthy, liveable, and inclusive communities cannot be underestimated.

For this reason, the City of Cape Town’s Sport, Recreation and Amenities Department has committed over 80 staff members and millions of rands to provide recreation programmes.‘Research indicates that sustained involvement in sport and recreation programmes can help to combat challenges in communities such as alcohol and drug abuse, crime and vandalism. Keeping residents active and engaged in their free time and providing a safe space for people to socialise is critical for real community cohesion and development.

‘For many children, free time is spent watching television as parents are often hesitant to allow young children outside to play because of the dangers of exposure to drugs and violence, or worse. Organised sports and recreation programmes mean that children can spend their free time being active in a safe environment. The City’s new policy on sport and recreation programmes seeks to guide decision-making to improve the quantity and quality of recreation programmes,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Community Services and Special Projects, Alderman Belinda Walker.

The development of recreation hubs is a key outcome in the Department’s recreation strategy.

Currently there are 55 established hubs throughout Cape Town, where over 12 000 people of all ages participate in recreation programmes weekly.

Recreation hubs have planned recreational activities for at least five days a week and at least three hours per day. Each hub has a dedicated team of play leaders involved in the delivery of recreation programmes aimed at getting communities mentally and physically active.

‘We want to provide a variety of programmes which appeal to the interests of the local community. We are learning as we go which activities attract the most people and make them want to keep coming back. Aerobics, for example, has proven very popular and the City’s spray parks are a real attraction on hot summer days,’ said Alderman Walker.

Over the past two years, the City has spent over R5 million on equipment for hubs to ensure that they offer high quality recreation activities. Examples of equipment provided include table tennis and table soccer, a set of giant games, pool tables, and portable soccer and netball goal posts.

‘We owe it to our young people to provide places and activities where they can exercise and play, safe from potential social problems. We are trying hard to develop new and better ways of engaging young people in sport and recreation activities.

‘We cannot make an impact without the support of local communities. I would like to appeal to organisations and individuals who share our vision for positive youth development to engage with the City around how they can partner with us,’ said Alderman Walker.

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