What Quinton said about his visit to the Thuthuzela Care Centre
(Excerpt from Quinton’s daily Soweto diary, South Africa 16 June 2005 Youth Day)
“Before visiting the Thuthuzela (Too-too- zay- la) centre, I knew that sexual violence and HIV/AIDS were big issues in South Africa, but when you meet victims of it, it is a completely different story. You get a whole new perspective. The Thuthuzela Centres are fantastic and more of them are needed across the country, although the medical equipment used is very expensive so it takes time to find funds for new ones.
We have so many challenges, and AIDS is the biggest of them all. We have to educate people that it is not cool to rape, not just because of the brutality of the crime, but because it spreads HIV/AIDS too. Driving back from the centre, within ten minutes it felt like we had left the developing world and were back in the developed world. The balance between rich and poor here is not right. It is natural for someone with no food to feed his family to go out and look for it. Statistics show that poverty leads to crime and can lead girls into prostitution and it is difficult to escape from that life. The government is working hard, but there is still more to be done and I hope they can find the right way to make things fairer and give people opportunities and hope.
This trip to Johannesburg has been an unbelievable one. It was possible because of the club’s partnership with UNICEF, and it has been very special to see the great work UNICEF is doing for children in my home country. I promised the Sowetans that I would be back, and I meant it.”