A group of 15 troublesome boys in Pretoria have had a first-hand experience of what it is like to be a prisoner after spending a day in the Atteridgeville Correctional Centre.
The Correctional Services Department has partnered with the Siyathuthikisa Bonke Crisis Centre in Atteridgeville in a bid to prevent crime.
The boys aged between 13 and 18 swapped their school uniform for orange overalls and partook in activities offenders are involved with daily.
They include working the fields and spending time in single cells.
The parents of the boys consented to this unusual method of discipline.
The department’s Gauteng commissioner Thakane Molatedi says, “If we go and talk to them, and they don’t experience it themselves, this does not have the impact that is desired. So, it is very important that we take them through this process because we believe that if they go through the admission process – they are in a cell, now they are working in the fields – we want to show them what offenders do on a daily basis.”