Royal Bafokeng and Impala Rustenburg partner to deliver sport in schools
Royal Bafokeng Sports and Impala Rustenburg are proud to announce their partnership to support the Metshameko Program in a one-year initiative aimed at developing skills and a lifelong love of sport in both primary and high school learners in the schools situated around the Impala operation and in the broader Rustenburg community.
The Metshameko Program, a sustainable implementation plan for sports, which is in its sixth year of operation, has been expanded to include more schools. The programme is expected to impact over 1 950 children involved in football and netball in the U/13 and U/17 divisions.
Commenting on the Royal Bafokeng’s support of the initiative, Eugene Thipe, head of Royal Bafokeng Sports, says, “We are delighted to partner with Impala in supporting the Metshameko Program. It is these kinds of partnerships and in the spirit of working together that will ensure our children realise their full potential. The promotion of sport at school plays an important role in creating motivation and commitment to lifelong participation. Evidence exists that physical sports activity can benefit education. It is acknowledged that sport provides school children with life skills in a way that is unsurpassed by any other activity.”
Mark Munroe, CE of Impala Rustenburg, comments, “Investment in sport is deeply entrenched at Impala. Within our internal family of staff, we have been supporting teams and individuals for over 15 years. At the same time, we support 33 primary and secondary schools in the communities adjacent to the operation through various projects. We are grateful to the Metshameko Program for this opportunity to partner with Royal Bafokeng and to marry our belief in the power of sport with our long-established initiatives aimed at developing the youth in our local communities. Organised, well-structured youth sports programmes provide children with valuable life lessons that go above and beyond the physical health benefits. These include boosting self-esteem, building leadership qualities, and teaching children how to work as a team. Sport can be a gamechanger in a young person’s life, and investing in the youth can change the future of our country.”
A total of 42 primary schools and 23 secondary schools are participating in the season-long programme, which commemorated its official launch on 14 May 2022 with the start of the League matches. The programme began earlier this year with a skills transfer programme through coaching courses, and, with the League matches kicking off this week, 20 schools will be participating every week leading up to the Play Offs in September. School holiday camps and tournaments will be held in the June and September holidays, and in July a Metshamelo squad will compete in the Netball South Africa Junior National Championships. This jam-packed sporting year will conclude with a Championship Festival and the League Finals in October 2022.
Thipe says, “School sport has a valuable contribution to make in the development and transformation of sport. In addition, sport in schools has the potential to maximise the sports potential of learners and to become the hub for sports development. Through this programme, we aim to encourage mass participation of children, youth and adults in school sports, to identify and develop sporting talent, recruit and develop coaching staff, and maximise access to sport in participating schools.”
In addition to the 1 950 children who will be impacted by the programme, it is expected that more than 140 teacher coaches, 30 volunteer coaches and 45 umpires will benefit from the programme.