School learners to spend night outdoors in support of homeless individuals

The project aims to teach kindness and empathy to kids. Picture: Supplied

The project aims to teach kindness and empathy to kids. Picture: Supplied

Published May 7, 2024


Capriccio Private School students in Milnerton will join in U-turn's 'A Night on the Streets’ campaign on May 18.

U-turn is a non-profit that was founded in 1997 and aims to give homeless people the skills to overcome homelessness.

Its chief communications officer Valerie Govender said these compassionate young people will sleep in their school playground from 18:00 to 6:00 the next morning to support homeless in the neighbourhood.

On the day, business executives, legislators, city officials, and key influencers are also expected to sleep on the streets of Claremont to raise awareness about homelessness and support U-turn’s efforts.

To accommodate everyone, a virtual event with Quicket tickets is available, allowing attendees to sleep in their own backyards.

Capriccio Private School’s Principal, Rosina Lee-Warden, leads this programme to promote social justice.

Lee-Warden emphasised the need of teaching kindness and empathy in her kids, especially for those who are vulnerable and less fortunate.

“Homelessness is a real problem in our country. Our learners have a profound understanding of the importance of being kind to others.

“This campaign presents an invaluable opportunity for our students to not only learn about an important social issue but also to actively contribute towards its alleviation,” Lee-Warden said.

According to the Western Cape government, there are at least 14,000 homeless people in the greater Cape Town area. The government dissuaded people from giving money to the homeless.

“Giving money directly to a homeless person does not help to change their situation. While a homeless person may use the money to buy food, those dependent on drugs or alcohol will use it to fund their addiction,” said the WC government.

Valerie Govender, chief communications officer of U-turn, praised the young learners for their kindness and encouraged other schools to participate as well.

“By experiencing a night outdoors, the Capriccio learners will gain first-hand insight into the realities of homelessness, fostering empathy and understanding. As little as they are, they are making a huge statement by their actions. My hope is that other schools come on board too,” said Govender.

She went on to say that this practical interaction functions as a teaching tool, allowing pupils to grasp the complications of homelessness extend beyond theoretical arguments.

“This virtual event allows for anyone to participate on the night by purchasing a ticket via Quicket and joining in wherever they are – sleeping outside their homes, school, churches or businesses.. For all the details contact us at U-turn Homeless Ministries and be part of this one night to support the homeless,” added Govender.

IOL News