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Categories: Buddy and Me
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My full new itinerary including Namibia and Botswana to the end of the tour (19 May 2010).
To watch Buddy and Me in real time click here, select South Africa under “Global Fleet Logins:” in the left hand panel, enter cellphone number 0822549129 and password Buddy.
To make a donation to or information on any of the organisations involved in assisting victims of child rape and abuse, please click on one of the following links:
After a magnificent night with the Round Tablers of Carletonville and their wives which did not end quite as late as I expected, I was actually in bed, after doing my blog, a little after 12:30am, and proceeded to have a fantastic night’s sleep.
After thanking Barné and Adéle for their kind hospitality and friendship I followed Adéle to the Court House where we were joined by the other ladies of the Tablers of Carletonville and I was introduced to the Senior Public Prosecutor Elise Smit.
The reason for being taken to the court is that the ladies of the Tablers of Carletonville RT50 have formed a support group for the Tablers of Carletonville. It is the first area I have visited where the ladies, who because of the ‘rules’ of Round Table International are unable to become Tablers have formed such a group and they have named the club “Legs” and they explained that every ‘Table’ is supported by legs and so they are the support structure, as in ‘legs’ of the Carletonville ‘Table’, I think it is very neat, well done ladies.
One of the projects initiated by “Legs’ involves establishing or rather improving the child friendly ‘Care Room’ which has been established in the court which allows a child victim of rape or abuse to provide evidence in a ‘child friendly’ atmosphere. The room has been painted out in lovely bright colours and is being provided with toys and other ‘goodies’ to make the child feel relaxed and not under pressure. The room is also fitted out with an intercom system which allows the child to give evidence without having to be faced with the scary experience of having to face his or her rapist and even worse in some cases the scary defence council.
The victim/witness is also able to make use of dolls to describe what happened during the rape and these dolls are in both male and female form.
The ladies forming “Legs” consists of:
- Nadine Janneke
- Adéle Yzelle
- Betsie Ford
- Adéle Dawson
- Martie Hattingh
- Cindy Botha
- Nadia Ferreira
- Ruzelle Sol
- Shulize Cronje
- Natalie Talbat
- Helene Agenbach
So to these ladies, I take my hat off to you, you are doing an amazing job for the community of Carletonville, keep up the great work and thank you for the coffee and chat following our court visit, you ladies are truly amazing individuals as are your husbands.
My chat with Elize Smit (SPP) revealed that the use of the ‘Care Room’ has helped in increasing the conviction rate of child rape cases to a staggering 60% in the Carletonville area, which when considering the fact that our countries average conviction rate is currently reported to be a mere 4 – 6%, this is an incredible fete.
The news during the day which was covered extensively by the radio stations, was the fact that Julius Malema (President of the ANC’s youth league) was visiting the Carletonville area during the last couple of days and had been visiting the schools promoting the fact that “If children do not want to go to school, then they don’t have to, and if teachers do not want to teach, then they must not go to school and teach”. And this is in light of the fact that South Africa has just experienced one of, if not, the worst, matric results ever experienced in the history of South Africa’s education system with something like 20 schools not having obtained a single matric pass and something like 200 schools obtaining less than a 20% pass rate for 2009. My message to Julius Malema is, “If this is the message that a supposedly ‘leader’ of our governing political party’s youth league sends to the youth of our country, may God help us and the future of our country, because, although you and our government do not appear to be aware of the fact, the children are the future of our country and messages like the one you are portraying to our scholars and ‘proper’ youth is not going to help the pathetic situation our education system is currently finding itself in, rather just keep your mouth shut and let the more educated individuals of our country get on with the job of trying to get our youth educated”.
My visit to the Beares and Lubners stores which are situated right next door to each other, as in sharing a dividing wall, proved to be a very merry and festive one. The Beares manager, Leon Visser and a friend Pieter had brought their key board, guitar, amp and microphone into the Beares store and provided the staff and public with some great music.
After a long day in Carletonville which included a very long drive through almost every street of Carletonville escorted by the police with sirens blaring and blue lights flashing, at 2:30 in the afternoon with some very nasty dark clouds looming, I bid the staff and guests of Beares and Lubners farewell and headed out of Carletonville, destination home – Germiston, and hoped I would make it home before the sky’s opened up, and soon after I arrived home that is exactly what happened.
The rest of the weekend was spent relaxing with our dogs, if one can call being driven crazy by the mutts relaxing, but check out this one, he is also called Buddy and is reputed to be a cross – miniature Doberman Pincher – Jack Russell, quite a combination, but a character of note.
So with that, I will love and leave you, and hope you all had a terrific and restful weekend. So until tomorrow – Monday the 25th when ‘Buddy and Me’ visit the Thabong and Evaton townships, keep well and keep all children safe.
Caring regards from
Buddy and Me (Steve Heath)
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