September 23 - The City of Cape Town’s metro police department youth camp programme was launched in 2013 as part of the department’s social crime prevention interventions. Photo: CoCT
September 23 - The City of Cape Town’s metro police department youth camp programme was launched in 2013 as part of the department’s social crime prevention interventions. Photo: CoCT
September 23 - The City of Cape Town’s metro police department youth camp programme was launched in 2013 as part of the department’s social crime prevention interventions. Photo: CoCT
September 23 - The City of Cape Town’s metro police department youth camp programme was launched in 2013 as part of the department’s social crime prevention interventions. Photo: CoCT

Cape Town -  The City of Cape Town’s metropolitan police department (CTMPD) has concluded another successful youth academy camp, bringing the number of young people involved since its inception to 2347.

These camps are a stepping stone into the department’s youth cadet programme, mayoral committee member for safety and security; and social services JP Smith said.

Since then, thousands of young people from schools across the city had participated in the camps which focused on life skills and leadership, he said.

Group topics included gangsterism, peer pressure, and ethics. Firm favourites on the programme were physical activity and demonstrations by the metro police K9 and equestrian units.

"The camps provide our young people with the opportunity to see beyond their circumstances and encourage them to look at law enforcement through different eyes. About 165 of those who attended the camps have been selected for our youth cadet programme and some have become leaders," Smith said.

The City of Cape Town’s metro police department youth camp programme was launched in 2013 as part of the department’s social crime prevention interventions. Picture: CoCT

The cadet programme was intended to help participants become active community leaders and instill a sense of social responsibility, active citizenship, and fostering a partnership with the metro police department and other law enforcement agencies to fight crime and keep the city safe. Cadets were eligible to wear the uniform, go out on public duty under supervision, and receive membership award certificates.

"The youth cadet programme is designed to provide a safe environment where young people can learn as individuals, develop a positive relationship with enforcement agencies, and actively support their community. Our staff work hard to actively engage and prepare these young people for their future," he said.

The programme did not recruit for the CTMPD, but support and guidance were given to cadets interested in joining. Numerous cadets who had completed school had been recruited as senior cadets through extended public works programme (EPWP) employment attached to metro police, increasing their prospects of potential full-time positions in the city’s enforcement services over time, should they apply.

"The city aims to build safe and inclusive communities as part of its organisational development and transformation plan and the youth are crucial to the success of the plan. Giving our young people this opportunity is just another stepping stone to their future and towards a city that embraces everyone," said Smith.