What are you going to do …?

Hello All

A group of interested parents has drafted the letter below (actually drafted by Glen Robbins on behalf of interested parents).  We are seeking schools and children’s organisations — and prominent individuals– to sign onto this letter.  Please let us know if you will sign on (or if you request any edits to do so!).

We would like to then organise children to write letters of their own and draw pictures, and to come with their parents and other adults to deliver these letters, probably to the Municipal Manager.  A sort of children’s protest action or, if you like, teaching our children about civic action and democracy!

Many thanks

Best

Mary Galvin

Tel 072 463 8854

 Yet Another Disappointment for Durban’s Children

 In the past decade or so Durban has witnessed a collapse of accessible and affordable spaces and places of quality geared specifically to entertaining and educating children.  The news that the Umgeni Bird Park is to be closed by Tsogo Sun is yet another sad headline which follows on the closure of the Animal Farm some years ago (also to accommodate Tsogo), the terrible decline of Mitchell Park, the impending loss of Vetchies Pier, the closure of the Snake Park and the complete lack of maintenance and investment in City museums such as the Natural History Museum, Maritime Museum and Local History Museum.  Areas such as Blue Lagoon’s putt-putt golf course and the dilapidated state of the beachfront funfair as well as the shocking state of many city parks and play grounds all point to a serious problem in strategy and management in the Municipality.  In exchange the City has many largely private spaces in malls, Casinos or at uShaka – undoubtably new assets but often inaccessible to many and extremely costly.  In a world where children in South Africa are under threat from high levels of insecurity seen in the extreme in rising numbers of street children it is high time that the Municipality and politicians of all parties take the environment for children in our city more seriously.  It is high time that there is accountability and that children and parents are engaged in helping the City become more child-friendly and live up to the very generous assessment of Durban as a family destination recently reported publication by the Rough Guide.

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