The Western Cape Minister of Social Development, Sharna Fernandez strongly condemns the armed robbery that took place at Crossroads Youth Café.
The incident took place on Friday morning, while one of the classes were in session at the Youth Café. According to a staff member, a group of about 5 men armed with guns stormed into our facility and fled with 16 laptops.
A case of armed robbery has been registered at the Nyanga police station, and anyone with information is asked to report it to the police.
Minister Fernandez said: “It is devastating that the services we have established for vulnerable youth have been compromised. Youth Cafés should be safe and positive spaces that provide opportunities for further development for our youth at risk across the Province. It is the actions of a few that have robbed the youth in this community of access to opportunities and other services. We are grateful that no one was injured during the ordeal. We have also offered all those affected by the incident counselling to help deal with the traumatic event.”
Despite the robbery, the staff have continued with their work at the facility. The centre is one of the biggest after-school centres in the area. Many participants use it to prepare for their final examinations.
Since 2013, DSD Youth Cafes have received more than 10 000 visits every month. These facilities offer high-speed internet and computer access for budding entrepreneurs and aspirant jo-seekers, as well as access to various training programmes.
“Through our Social Development Department Services, we have quadrupled the number of youth benefiting from Youth Development Services, from 5600 in 2009, to 19 400 in 2018,” says Minister Fernandez.
As DSD, we remain committed to assisting the most vulnerable in our society, so that their lives can improve.