Guide Second Chance of Sunshine: A young mothers battle between duty and freedom

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Molly worries that her six-year-old daughter Rosa is going without, but is willing to sacrifice luxuries - and her own happiness - for her little girl to have a dad. Then a family friend dies suddenly, leaving Molly a share in a successful pottery business. To Brian's horror, it's on condition that Molly takes a job at the pottery. Seizing the chance to bring in much needed income, Molly accepts the position, and soon gains strength from her new-found independence. It's a strength she will need to take her through the tragedy that lies ahead What readers are saying about Second Chance of Sunshine: It makes for pleasurable, laidback, and captivating reading'.

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Pamela Evans

When you click on a Sponsored Product ad, you will be taken to an Amazon detail page where you can learn more about the product and purchase it. To learn more about Amazon Sponsored Products, click here. Would you like to tell us about a lower price? Learn more about Amazon Prime. Warm, entertaining and peopled with lovable characters' - Lancashire Evening Post It's , and while many women are doing jobs they'd never dreamed of before the war, Molly Hawkins is chained firmly to the kitchen sink.

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Other centres in the Western Cape, places like Die Bult, Eureka and Wellington Youth Centre, changed with the times and fell in line with new legislation. Oddly, despite the court case, which attracted a fair amount of media coverage, Ottery continued as before. It had opened its doors to a group of juvenile offenders, but only briefly, and then went back to caring for boys who had been referred there by judges, but who had mostly escaped criminal records.

It entered some kind of a grey zone as a service provider to government — a baton being passed between two departments, neither one taking full responsibility and only one allocating budget to it.

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Government granted Ottery a provisional license to operate, but only until October. What happens after that is not yet known. Mo says the boys at Ottery are free to come and go, but few run away. Mandela and Che Guevara may well inspire Mo, but he is a very different kind of revolutionary.

In his second year of working at Ottery, Mo managed to take some photographs of mass caning that was taking place at two hostels. All boys were lined up and whipped as punishment for some or other transgression.

Mo approached the principal to complain, even though he was still regularly re-applying for his job and risked being fired. The principal issued Mo with an ultimatum: The beautiful thing is that there was no mass punishment after that. His father ran a corner grocery shop in an Indian suburb at a time of apartheid segregation. He died when Mo was 12, leaving his wife to raise five children.

He took Mo to bookshops and to meetings, introducing him to key figures and literature that would shape his thinking. There was little money and Mo had to find a sponsor for his university studies.

Mo recalls that it was at the university registration table that he changed his mind, changed his subjects and changed his life. He joined youth movements, got involved in magazines and student politics but, like his siblings, he gravitated towards education. Together with his sisters, Mo now cares for his ailing mother, who is approaching He lives with his family and seven cats. On the day of his 54th birthday, his father-in-law arrives for an unannounced afternoon visit at the school.

Soon the rest of the family arrives to surprise him. Numbers tend to leave Mo frazzled, especially given that it takes over R4-million per year to run the school. Aside from the daily academic and practical work, the school offers or accommodates a variety of programmes like surfing, karate, football, cooking, pigeon racing and dog training. If a child shows an interest in acting, Mo has been known to okay trips to auditions. As often as he can, he uses his networks to organise free tickets for the boys to attend football matches or comedy shows. He also has a strict rule for the odd businesses that rent space at Ottery: He cleans cars and is starting to help with spray-painting jobs.

Eugene, who spent three years at Ottery, helps fix trucks and rides along on deliveries between Cape Town and Bloemfontein. While not all boys can land jobs, and not all jobs guarantee success, the scheme helps some avoid being sucked back into gang life. This year he turns 46, having spent almost half his life inside a prison. On the streets, he ran with the Americans. Behind bars — serving three separate sentences for armed robbery — he turned to the 26s for protection. He was on a local radio station late one night, when Ottery called him and asked whether he would be willing to work there.

He drafted his first CV and arrived for the interview. The experience has been transformative. He and his friend and fellow Ottery counsellor, Saleh Booley, work the streets, pulling kids out of dangerous situations or driving them to football matches and surfing spots. They confront drug dealers, keep up appearances with gang bosses a necessary evil if they are to continue operating in these areas and visit families of Ottery boys. Outside Grace House is a symbolic tombstone with the names of some of the biggest gangs in the province. Rashaad is a larger-than-life character, who laughs easily.

He lives at the school with his wife and children. What he searched for when he joined the gangs, that sense of belonging, Rashaad has found at Ottery.

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Many of the boys experience the same thing. Saleh has worked at Ottery for 27 years, almost as long as Mo. He finds it exciting and unpredictable. Saleh believes if Ottery were to close, it would be disastrous. With a country in transition, he says, many families are not coping and their children need refuge — a safe place where they are treated humanely.

Rashaad says that if Mo came to him tomorrow and told him the money had run out, he would probably work for free. Pamela Evans: Books, Biography, Blogs, Audiobooks, Kindle

Pinnock believes what the province and the country face is not a gang problem, but a youth problem. Unable to earn money or respect, gangs become the only option for many children. And then we blame them for the problem of high crime and gangs.

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Mo is anticipating a budget cut this year. This will place even more pressure on Ottery in its battle for survival. More than anything else, he craves certainty. As he reads the situation, the levels of school violence are rising and more children are exhibiting behavioural problems.

This could be a chance for him and his staff to intervene earlier, before the police officers and judges. The Education Department confirms this, saying: Clayton, the boy whose mother was stabbed to death in front of him when he was nine, has presented Ottery with a test case. Maggie of Moss Street: Love, tragedy and a woman's struggle to do what's right 7 Jun The Carousel Keeps Turning: A woman's journey to escape her brutal past 26 Apr In hard times a young mother discovers her inner strength 4 Feb Previous Page 1 2 3 Next Page.

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