I have been watching the news with sadness and helplessness for the last few days and the many comments on the need for “culture” to be addressed.  The culture of VIOLENCE. This has been uttered by every single leader from all sectors and cultures.  WE NEED A CHANGE OF CULTURE.  Prince Zulu appealed to singers to question the content of their songs and the video images of the songs to be given thought to.  Exactly!  We are selling a culture of cheap entertainment with promiscuous images and offensive lyrics – just one example that comes to mind as I write this.

I have, for many years now, attempted to find a way to get our programme to ALL children in South Africa – to promote a culture which affects values and morals.  The behaviour we see on our screens now (whether the perpetrators or victims) is due to a lack –  Lack of guidance, willingness to please, consideration for the feelings of others, instant gratification, greed, dishonesty, communication skills, respect, self-regulation and, ultimately, the privilege of conscience.

Our President is allaying the fears and dealing with the issue of gender-based violence, criminality and xenophobia by promising life in prison without parole. Surely, the focus should be on not having to deal with this type of punishment: starting with social emotional education in Foundation Phase? This is everything Manners4Minors stands for! This is the ONLY chance we have to affect decision-making and conscience on a major scale.  You, being a parent who is pro-active in the character building of your child is to be acknowledged.

I have worked tirelessly for 12 years on affecting the lives of 1000s of children but have never managed to get the attention of anyone in Department of Basic Education in under-privileged schools to acknowledge the need on a national level.

Pre- and post-election promises included Foundation Phase intervention because of the importance of influence in this import phase of a child’s development.  I believe, with all that I have in my heart for every minute I have dedicated to this programme and to every parent that is aware of the importance of morals and value parenting, you are changing the future.  Mass implementation would have an affect on the crime statistics in our country.

Changing a culture of violence simply does not happen because the punishment becomes more stringent.  It happens in the formation of character.

Yours, in the HOPE of a better South Africa through our Children.

Daleen Taylor

Founder, Manners4Minors

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