Our Sports Development Programme was established with the dual aims of achieving greater social integration in the Gansbaai region and educating and empowering youth, using sports as a vehicle for change
Our multiple award winning programme launched in 2008, with the construction of a multipurpose sports facility, including a showpiece, a full-size, third generation (3G) FIFA standard artificial soccer pitch (sponsored by the English Premier League), situated at the cusp of traditionally segregated black, white and coloured areas of Gansbaai. This was achieved with the invaluable assistance of Sir Dave Richards, then chair of the English Premier League, (which still contributes funding to the project). We have also been assisted by members of the Overstrand Municipality, ABSA Bank and the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport, all of whom helped us fund equipment and maintain the facility.
The Football Foundation runs football, netball, hockey and athletics training sessions in Gansbaai, Stanford and Hermanus, which engage approximately 2000 youths each week. In addition to these sessions, we also run programmes centered on HIV education, female empowerment, environmental education, proper nutrition, enterprise development and integration. With this flagship programme, we aim to uplift communities by empowering individuals through sports programmes, including accredited skills training and leadership opportunities, and simultaneously promote education, health, social integration and participation through sports. Today we facilitate a great number of projects for 9 000 youth in the Overstrand, six days a week.
The Sports Development programmes comprise training five days per week, with matches, tournaments and coaching clinics taking place on weekends. Dedicated coaches and volunteers run football, netball, hockey, cross-country, athletics, female rugby and cricket coaching sessions and education lessons for the youth in the Overberg area at 16 schools, developing youth between the ages of 6 – 19 years.
Development football coaching was launched in 2008 in the lead-up top the 2010 Football World Cup hosted in South Africa.
Coaching is offered to children between the ages of 6-19 years old on community fields across the Overberg.
The community sports fields, with coaches and volunteers are a constructive, safe place for children to spend their afternoons.
Development hockey coaching is provided to boys and girls between 6-19 years, giving them the opportunity to learn hockey skills, and other life skills like healthy development, nutrition and team work.
Former German Bundesliga player, Delf Ness (Der Club an der Alster, Hamburg), inspired the Alster Grootbos Hockey Project, bringing hockey to communities of the Overberg.
SPORT FOR GIRLS
Girls and young women participate in all sports codes including Female Football, Female Rugby, Surf Therapy and Canoeing as well as netball, hockey and cross-country. They develop physical and mental strength in a healthy, outdoor environment as girls and young women, and enjoy all the benefits of training, individual fitness, teamwork and matches with positive female role models.
This Development Canoeing Programme for 8-15 year olds is run on the Klein River in Stanford in partnership with the Stanford Canoe Club.
It teaches basic water safety and water conservation, and gives opportunities to participate in local and national canoeing, marathon and sprint regattas throughout the year.
LEARN 2 SWIM WATER SAFETY
6 year old girls and boys from the local community are taught basic water safety in the summer months so that they can safely enter and exit the swimming pool in an area surrounded by bodies of water.
During school holidays, coaches and volunteers offer sports coaching, games and fun activities to keep children entertained and safe while their parents work.
INCLUSIVE INTEGRATION SPORTS PROGRAMME
Coaches and volunteers offer fun games and activities that encourage children of all ages and backgrounds to play together and build relationships, breaking down barriers.
The programme aims to support the Foundation’s mission of using sport as a tool for social integration and participation.
Teenage girls between the ages of 12-14 years are invited to attend an empowerment club which teaches lifeskills and a healthy outlook to vulnerable girls in order to help them protect themselves from socio-economic pressures in under-served communities.
Female coaches and volunteers become role models while the girls themselves become peer mentors.
This two-year programme ends in a female empowerment camp experience.
Healthy, nutritious meals are provided at all sports practices and matches of the Football Foundation, as well as to all infants and children who attend the four Early Childhood Development Centres in Gansbaai which are supported by the Grootbos Foundation.
These meals promote healthy growth and development.
EARTH RANGERS EDUCATION
Our Earth Rangers youth environmental and nutrition education project is a unique after-school programme that combines nutrition and environmental education excursions to encourage an appreciation for nature, healthy development and develop conservation stewards.
Focusing on healthy development, the fynbos and marine environments, the main ecosystems in the Overstrand area, keeps it local, fun and relevant.