We are still one of you not ‘nyaopes’

Users saying job provision can be the solution to their problem.

Our community parks and open spaces are mostly filled with young men and recently being joined by young women who are without jobs and only have time to do nothing but to be together and do whatever they think it can keep them going.

In recent days, our brothers and sisters’ future is being consumed by substance abuse. And the biggest problem the country is facing is the use of the drug known as ‘nyaope’.

“We understand that people might be looking at us as “failures”, but the truth of the matter is everybody makes mistakes and we should learn from those mistakes. We are not doing this thing because we want to, but it is difficult to get out of this environment once you are in, the brothers explained.

“I have been in rehab like three times, but coming back home and doing nothing takes us back to doing these things. I can assure you that a little support from our community starting from our families to the mayor and maybe from different organizations can help because giving us names and thinking less of us and pushing us aside is not doing us or anyone any better,” said Maqoba Dlamini.

Being called names may be seen as nothing serious, but it really has a huge impact on what people turn to be. “We are still part of the community, people should just give us support instead of calling us names because that plants negative esteem in our mind.

“One other distrustful thing is that people are doing bad things and they hide their bad habits by us. But the most boring part is that people say we do not want to work, but when there are projects that we suppose to be working on we are not called.

“You find that there are people from other areas working on those projects while we are here, and the worse part they don’t even alert the community about these projects, you just wake up in the morning see people working.”

“We are trying to get rid of these substances, we even arrange soccer tournaments to keep us busy on weekends, just like this Saturday we are going to play at Mapetla with the Sweet Limited Youth.

“If we can have rehearsal centers which focus on us as “users” and a center for ex-convicts where we will be doing arts, from gumboots dance, acting and other activities of our interest, I think that could be much better,” said Joseph Malindi.

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