The R20-million Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) loveLife Youth Centre in KwaNobuhle, Uitenhage was unveiled on Friday, 30 November 2012.The KwaNobuhle loveLife Y-Centre opening coincided with World Aids Day on 1 December.
The centre, which has been under construction for eight months, is the second of its kind for the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan Municipality and the first for Uitenhage. It is funded by a joint Volkswagen AG and IG Metal donation and will be managed by the loveLife Trust.
The aim of the centre is to give the young people of KwaNobuhle and the greater Uitenhage area a safe haven where they can play sport and interact with their peers and adults, thereby developing long term supportive relationships.
According to Nonkqubela Maliza, Director of Corporate and Government Affairs at Volkswagen Group South Africa, the centre is set to impact over 20 000 youths annually, has a youth-friendly clinic which offers specialised HIV and Aids advice, as well as counseling and support services for teens and parents. It is also set to provide outreach programmes to 20 schools in the area.
Volkswagen lends a hand
"In 2010, the members of the Volkswagen Group Board of Management visited our company in Uitenhage while attending the Soccer World Cup. In the spirit of the World Cup, they made a legacy donation of R20-million to be used for the construction of this loveLife Y-Centre," said Managing Director David Powels.
The R20-million investment covers the construction of the centre and its running costs for the next four years.
As with other Y-Centres around the country, peer educators, known as Ground Breakers, will be trained from within the communities to speak at schools and publicly about issues such as sex and relationships.
Community leader Themba Kani, who was appointed as the manager of the Y-Centre earlier this year, said the centre would have a positive influence on the youth in the area.
"I truly believe that the centre will give our young people a positive vision for the future. The lack of HIV/Aids information is a major problem in the area and I believe that we can educate and empower the youth to change their lives for the better," said Kani.
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