Youth prepped for life and workplace

The youth participate in hiking, and rock climbing to build their fitness and confidence.

Braaing and camping are some of the things an Athlone organisation is using to teach young people life skills and prepare them for the workplace.

Matai Youth Camp, a non-profit, was founded in 2013, and holds camps, excursions, reunions, family retreats, and team-building programmes throughout the year.

During the camps, participants learn how to create CVs and prepare for job interviews There’s also lessons in first aid, health and fitness, personal hygiene, goal-setting and conflict resolution. They even learn how to braai. Included in the mix of activities are rock climbing, beach activities and hiking.

The organisation’s founder, Belinka Vlotman, said they build young people’s confidence and give them the basic tools they need for life after school.

“Our research has shown that the youth become lost in the system. Many do not consider studying further because that is not an option in the household. Most youth are faced with various adversities, and we try and approach these with applicable solutions,” she said.

“Being a contestant on the Ultimate Braaimaster Season 5 and the winner of Kom Ons Braai, we’ve decided to teach the children this skill, which allows them to realise that electricity and gas isn’t required to do everyday cooking.”

The camps are hosted in the Winelands, Overberg and West Coast districts.

The organisation is looking for more volunteers, aged 19 to 60, who are willing to be trained as camp facilitators and cooks.

”Currently we are hosting back-to-back camps and do not have the manpower… We require each facilitator to be able to work with approximately 10 learners over a three-day period, be energy driven and passionate. All training is provided, a T-shirt, bedding and all meals,” Ms Vlotman said.

For more information call 021 638 5709 or 066 214 1651.