by Jeanelle Smuts

A sporting chance

Developing young sporting talent

Developing athletes
Developing future sports stars

The prestigious annual sporting event which sees over 22 000 learners across South Africa participating in inter-house competitions during the course of the year, culminates in a three day long National Tournament. 

Now in its tenth year, and proudly holding its own, the tournament had over 2 000 participants united for the opening ceremony at the Boksburg Stadium on 1 October 2012. 

Dignitaries, sport celebrities, former Miss South Africa, Bokang Montsane, and Transnet executives attended the opening ceremony in full support of the rising sports stars of the tournament. 

Although South Africa is rich in sporting talent, much of its potential talent sits undiscovered as it remains yet to be identified, nurtured and developed into heroes of tomorrow with whom the current generations identify.  

Transnet realised the unique opportunities created by sport, and felt obliged to go the extra mile to use their expertise and resources for the social benefit of all South Africans. As such, they have strategically made use of their CSI budget in order to give sporting opportunities to young sportsmen and women that would ordinarily not have access to such programmes. 

Preliminary rounds for the tournament kicked off months ago when 22 000 learners from 75 different schools participated in an inter-house competition. 5 000 learners were selected to participate in the four regional tournaments where that figure was further narrowed down to 2000. These learners participated in the final of the National Rural and Farms Sports Development Tournament. 

The Transnet Foundation has six portfolios – education, health, employee volunteerism, container assistance, special projects and sport. The sport portfolio receives the second largest budget, which is then split between the Transnet school of Excellence and the Transnet Rural and Farm Schools Tournament.

The Transnet Rural and Farms Development project is aimed at forming holistically run sports leagues for boys and girls between the ages of 13 and 19 in rural areas. This initiative undertaken by the Transnet Foundation intends to nurture, and develop our future sporting stars in netball, football, chess and athletics. 

The programme has seen a number of its learners win sporting scholarships and selected for national sports teams and regional soccer programmes. 

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