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Community Conversations well received by Moorreesburg participants

14 February 2019

A cross section of residents from Moorreesburg and surrounds were happy to have their voices heard on Wednesday, as the second of three Nation Building and Social Cohesion Community Conversations took place in the Swartland Municipality town.

The event was hosted by the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport (DCAS), as part of the national Department of Arts and Culture’s strategy to promote dialogue on the topic and ultimately redress the impact of apartheid.

Participants were encouraged to share their opinions and experiences regarding social cohesion in their communities, and their feedback will now be included in reports destined for the presidency.

“It’s a very good thing because everyone’s voices need to be heard. We are all affected by some of these issues,” said Moorreesburg resident, Daureen Cederas.

“It’s good that there is a way that we can also communicate how we feel and that we are also being listened to by the higher levels of government, so that we don’t feel like we’ve been forgotten because we are in a rural area. I’m happy that we are being granted opportunities to also have our voices heard.”

As with the first Community Conversation event of 2019, which took place at Lwandle Migrant Labour Museum on Friday 8 February, the event began with a presentation on the various factors which impact nation building and social cohesion across South Africa. These are the roles of race, language, morals, poverty alleviation and the youth.

After the presentation, the participants broke up into groups to discuss these factors; focussing specifically on why these issues affect social cohesion in their communities, how they can be solved, and who is responsible for solving them. The different groups went on to present the results of their discussions.

“I’ve noticed that there are lots of changes we can make in the community with regards to race and culture. We need to respect each other’s values and culture at home and in the work place. That would help improve the social cohesion,” said Porterville resident, Dané de Bruin.

“I feel that its needed and it I think it could help improve social cohesion if they use the information correctly. I think it’s good that the information will come to the attention of the presidency so that new policies can be implemented to solve these issues.”

Apart from giving ordinary South Africans a voice, the Community Conversations are also meant to give meaning to the preamble of the constitution. 

The next Nation Building and Social Cohesion Community Conversations event of 2019 will take place on Friday, 15 February at the Shipwreck Museum in Bredasdorp.

Media Enquiries: 

Dr Tania Colyn
Head of Communication Service
Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport
Tel: 021 483 9877 / 076 093 4913
E-mail: Tania.Colyn@westerncape.gov.za