WC Cultural Affairs Department ready for the Initiation Summer Season for 2022
The Western Cape’s Cultural Affairs and Sport Department said its all systems go for the Initiation Summer Season for 2022. The summer season starts on 1 November 2022 and will end on 31 January 2023.
The Department recorded no fatalities in last year’s summer initiation Season, which saw 1 417 initiates completing their rite of passage into adulthood, in 35 initiation sites throughout the Western Cape.
The Department says it’s working closely with local initiation forums, municipalities and parents of initiates to ensure that all the necessary steps have been followed to ensure the wellbeing of initiates across the province.
MEC Anroux Marais says her department has put in various measures to ensure safe iniations, including:
· Information sessions were held with various stakeholders to ensure that all requirements in terms of medical screenings for initiates would be met.
· DCAS arranged meetings with all stakeholders involved to introduce and explain the Customary Initiation Act, Act 2 of 2021.
· New members of the Western Cape Provincial Initiation Coordination Committee were appointed on 1 July 2022 for a five-year term of office.
· Applicable forms in terms of the Act were developed and provided to Initiation Forums for implementation.
· DCAS will provide Initiation Forums with personal protective equipment (PPEs), water tanks, fire extinguishers, fire beaters as well as metal fire buckets to mitigate any fire risks.
· Initiation Forums encouraged communities to act responsibly in ensuring a safer rite of passage. DCAS has provided consent forms to be completed and signed by prospective initiates, parents / guardians, responsible traditional carers, and surgeons. Communities taking their young men for initiation were encouraged to make use of the form as it stipulates common grounds of responsibilities between all the parties directly affected.
Marais wished all initiates well for the summer season.
‘’Our department takes the safety of our initiates very seriously and we work proactively throughout the year to ensure that this important rite of passage can be observed safely.”
‘’DCAS continues to support all those stakeholders involved in initiation in our province so that we can ensure the dignity and safety of all initiates,’’ she added.
Done By: Mitchum George