A home fire can be devastating and every year thousands of South Africans in informal settlements are left homeless when their shacks are razed.
It's in this context that SA Fire Watch in Ottery is launching a programme to empower young people with fire safety and equipment use skills.
On Weekend Breakfast, Africa Melane finds out more about the SA Fire Schools Project from spokesperson, Dr Michael Skriker.
At the SA Fire Schools Project we believe firstly that fire leaves people homeless, destitute and scarred, physically and emotionally.— Dr Michael Skriker, Spokesperson - SA Fire Schools Project
You can just imagine the excitement of the youngsters when they come here - about 20-40 of them at a time from high schools that are affiliated to the project.— Dr Michael Skriker, Spokesperson - SA Fire Schools Project
Subjects covered during the classes include the theory of combustion and the effective use of fire extinguishers. There's also participation in a live fire demonstration.
Dr Skriker says they aim to reach more than 1000 young people every year.
We believe by giving about 1200-1500 children a year that experience and that life skill, we have given 1200 families that skill.— Dr Michael Skriker, Spokesperson - SA Fire Schools Project
Most importantly, it's a project for the community in the hope of reducing mortality and morbidity, upskilling our young people in the use of fire equipment.— Dr Michael Skriker, Spokesperson - SA Fire Schools Project
The launch takes place at the Ottery Youth Care Centre on 15 August. Find more information here.
Click on the link below to listen to the conversation:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : SA Fire Schools Project ready to launch