“I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge. That myth is more potent than history. That dreams are more powerful than facts. That hope always triumphs over experience. That laughter is the only cure for grief. And I believe that love is stronger than death.” Robert Fulgham.
The month of March was a busy month for Sports Skills For Life Skills (SS4LS). On Tuesday 20 March, the former chairman of the Australian based LBW Trust and the current chairman of the Chappell Foundation Mr Darshak Mehta OAM visited SS4LS beneficiaries. The Chappell Foundation and LBW Trust are the key partners and sponsors of SS4LS. The purpose of the visit was to meet up and have a chat with some of the current beneficiaries and alumni of the program and get an insight on the progress of program in general.
To get a better understanding of what was discussed on the day, I had a chat with one of the most exciting characters who benefited from the program, Nkululeko Serame. According to Serame, the chairman spoke about how LBW Trust started. The program started because Mr Darshak Mehta OAM had a vision to make the world a better place, by giving “dreamers” the opportunity to study and realise their “dreams”, which justifies why Mr Darshak Mehta got an OAM award from the Queen of England. To make this dream a reality Mr Darshak Mehta OAM and the stakeholders of LBW Trust decided to fund talented dreamers who also had a clear vision. This was and is still being done by funding the beneficiaries by covering the following expenses; paying for their fees, paying for accommodation, paying for food, paying for medical aid and paying for other basic necessities. However, one thing that motivated Serame is the fact that, the chairman encouraged all beneficiaries to give back to their communities and the program. This to a greater extent will help the Trust and other humanitarians realise their vision of making the world a better place as it will help many if not most realise their dreams.
On Friday 23 March; SS4LS invited one of the schools which benefits from the program; De Villiers Graaff High. For the second year, the purpose of the invitation was to identify talent and recruit some pupils from De Villiers Graaff High for 2019 University of the Western Cape intake. Furthermore, the purpose was to identify the pupil’s interest and discuss the standards that one has to meet to be accepted into the desired program or degree. In other words, the program is now reaching out to schools and are trying to prepare high school pupils for life at university. According to Andrew Greenwood, the SS4LS program’s academic manager, the program is now more focused on the education component than sport.
Another highlight of the day was the use of the indoor facilities by De Villiers Graaff High at Bellville Technical High School, an indoor facility that was funded and developed by SS4LS. The activities that took place at this beautiful facility are exposure to an indoor facility, batting, bowling and a bit of coaching by SS4LS (South Africa level 3) coaches, Chezley Fortuin and Shandré Fritz.
On Tuesday 27 March, Chezley Fortuin, Shandre Fritz and Andrew Greenwood visited Paarl for some talent identification. According to Andrew, the visit was worth their while as they identified about 5 talented cricketers who had a good academic record. The pupils participated in a coaching clinic were the coaches observed and identified talent. According to Andrew, sports skills is pushing to work on more projects in order to identify talent especially talented women in sport. This to a greater extent will bridge the gap of social inequality in South Africa.