Youth in the Rustenburg Correctional Facility in the North West have warned others not to become involved in crime.
Despite their previous involvement in crime, the youth say they are now encouraged to finish their schooling with the hope of being successfully re-integrated into society.
“I have to make a difference out there, be a good citizen and be a good citizen out there,” says one inmate.
Another says: “What I am willing to do is to partake in becoming a motivational speaker in schools.”
Meanwhile, the Department of Correctional Services says they are worried about the skyrocketing number of youth offenders in the country’s prisons.
More than 42 000 juveniles are currently incarcerated.
Acting National Correctional Services Commissioner, Samuel Thobakgale, says: “The number that we have worries us a bit because there is overcrowding in some of our facilities. But for each and every inmate that we receive, we register them. We develop what we call a sentence plan so that for the time they spend with us, they can participate in rehabilitation programmes in correction programs and we make sure that we start restorative justice process where we ensure that they interact with victims and families in preparations for them to join the parole system.”