CURRENTLY ON AIR ⇒
  • Interviews, Current Affairs
    Mon, 7:45 am - 8:00 am
    [ - ]

feedback@radioislam.org.za

Radio Islam Logo


((( Listen Live )))))
Radio Islam Logo


Meet Mark Nicholson: The Capetonian drug addict-turned activist fighting for children

Apr 05, 2022

Lavender Hill football coach

 

By: Zahid Jadwat

 

Having just moved to Lavender Hill, Cape Town, and overwhelmed by the stress that comes with being unemployed, it was only a matter of time before Mark Nicholson landed in the wrong company and started abusing drugs.

 

But that was more than 20 years ago. Today, Nicholson is fighting to protect the children of Lavender Hill from falling prey to the very same ill habits that nearly ruined his life. He keeps them busy with a football club, which he started when he identified a lack of guidance for the kids in his community.

 

“In 2001, when I stopped drugging, I looked at the kids and saw that the kids were so lost and there was no guidance [nor] leadership. That’s why I decided to open a soccer team with about 10 girls and boys. That’s where we started,” he told Radio Islam.

 

Despite the scepticism of some people in the community, Nicholson and a group recently secured a 10-year lease from the City of Cape Town to build an art and culture facility on the same “battlefield” grounds where he lost five family members to gang violence.

 

“The [Rise Above Development] RAD centre started about five years ago when a group of us came together and decided we wanted to turn this battlefield into a field of dreams for our children. People took it as a joke because how can you build a youth centre on a gang battlefield, but we knew that things like this were going to happen,” he said.

 

When asked about the kinds of challenges faced by kids in the community, Nicholson said: “The biggest challenges of the youth that we are working with is bad parenting, unemployment, drugs, gangs [and] violence”.

 

“The parents just don’t care about them,” he said, adding that child abuse is a common occurrence in the community. “They don’t realise how it affects the child’s mentality,” he said.

 

Listen to the full interview here:

 

 

ADVERTISE HERE

Prime Spot!!!

Contact:
advertisingadmin@radioislam.co.za 

Related Articles

74 Years Later… Palestinians Still Await Freedom

74 Years Later… Palestinians Still Await Freedom

By Umamah Bakharia On the 74th anniversary of the Nakba (catastrophe), South Africa held marches both in Cape Town and Johannesburg to highlight the suffering of the people of Palestine by an oppressive apartheid Israel. Over this period, Israeli forces have carried...

read more
UN Envoy Urges Mauritania To Enforce Anti-Slavery Law

UN Envoy Urges Mauritania To Enforce Anti-Slavery Law

  By: Zahid Jadwat   A United Nations (UN) human rights expert has urged the authorities in Mauritania to take immediate steps to enforce anti-slavery laws.Following a visit to the West African country, UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery...

read more
Operation Dudula To Launch Cape Town Branch

Operation Dudula To Launch Cape Town Branch

  By: Zahid Jadwat   The vigilante Operation Dudula movement, which has defended its raids on foreigners' stores as an attempt to uphold South Africa's immigration laws, will launch yet another branch - this time in Cape Town - on Saturday (May 14).  ...

read more
NMB Municipality: Taps Could Run Dry Within A Month

NMB Municipality: Taps Could Run Dry Within A Month

  By: Zahid Jadwat   The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality in the Eastern Cape announced on Friday that the city's taps will run dry in a month. This brings the city's 1.3 million inhabitants closer to a humanitarian emergency.According to the Democratic...

read more

Subscribe to our Newsletter

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.