By Ndileka Lujabe
frayintermedia is excited to be involved in a project that teaches young volunteers social media skills in order to promote crime prevention.
Thirty-four volunteers from the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality were selected to be part of the Youth Crime Prevention Desk (YCPD) New Media Initiative.
Sponsored by the German International Cooperation (GIZ), the project aims to provide social media skills to volunteer members of the Youth Crime Prevention Desk (YCPD) in the Katlehong and Tembisa clusters.
Initiated 15 years ago, the YCPD are a joint initiative between the South African Police Service (SAPS) and the Department of Community Safety. The desks are based at various police stations and mobilise young people to get involved in crime prevention.
The project was launched in February, after an impact analysis commissioned by the GIZ in 2013, found that even though YCPDs were effective in their work, communication with young people and other youth desks was a challenge.
The Soul City Institute, with training support from frayintermedia, is providing a series of workshops to the YCDP members training them on how to use various social media to improve communication with the youth in their respective communities.
The first of four workshops was held in February and saw participants start profiles on Facebook, Twitter and get a Gmail account. A Facebook page was set up for each of the YCPDs.
The participants also set out to come up with a name for the initiative and #EK SE! My Voice, My Safety was the popular choice.
At a second workshop held at the end of March, youth desk members learnt how to organise a radio show, took part in a live Twitter chat, and learnt how to set up their own blogs.They also learnt how to take good photographs using their phone cameras.
The project is one of five pilot projects currently happening in five other countries including Togo, Ecuador, Bangladesh, and Palestinian territories.