Diversity Enhances Growth
September 30th 2016. CAC recently ran a short program in Durban, South Africa with two local organizations.
South Africa is a diverse country, starting from the landscape and its vegetation to the people and their different cultures and languages up to the various social issues that people face in their respective living environment. Since I have lived and volunteered in Durban between 2012 and 2014 I have been coming back to stay in touch with people that I have met during that time. After working with CAC for 2.5 years I was very lucky to get linked up recently with two organizations called iThemba Lethu (which is isiZulu and means “I have a destiny”) and The Domino Foundation who were excited to run a short 2-day program with us.
Whenever I run a CAC program I am always amazed by the diversity of the group. Each group contains different characters: you have the funny person that is joking and making silly comments, other participants are listening carefully and engaging in discussions, others engage with the games, but rather keep quiet during the discussion and others don’t say much, but I can see in their face that they are taking in everything that is going on and that has been said. These are just a few examples of the many different characters that make up these wonderful groups that I am privileged to work with. We all learn differently and therefore it is so important to allow everyone to engage with the content in its own way. I love diversity and so I was very happy to welcome 16 individuals who were eager to learn about Sport for Social Impact. And they confirmed my past experience by engaging with the content of the program in their own individual way. They were very experienced facilitators who already work with children and youth to educate them on Life Skills, HIV/AIDS prevention, nutrition, entrepreneurship and much more.
During the 2‑day program we explored many different topics that can be addressed through sport: Skills for Life, Health & Wellness, HIV/AIDS Prevention, Female Empowerment and more. The game that was most popular was “95% Football”; a game that created a lot of conflict which then led to discussions and negotiations amongst the participants. The rules of the game are pretty simple. The player with his/her hand on the head possesses the ball. The opposing team can gain the ball by tagging the person that has the ball. A team scores when a player runs with his/her hand on the head into the goal. Each team needs to come up with a strategy on how they want to pass the ball to each other. The group loved this game. As we played the game we faced different challenges: Sometimes the teams were confused, because nobody knew where the ball was or there were multiple balls in the game; another time somebody cheated which caused protest from the opposing team; then somebody didn’t pay attention when he/she was called by a teammate to receive the ball; sometimes players lost the ball, because they didn’t pass quickly enough which then tested the loyalty of their teammates. Despite these challenges and conflicts everybody was smiling while playing and everybody was excited when he/she had the ball running forward trying to score.
When the participants came back on the 2nd day they asked if we can play the same game again, but because I love diversity I decided to show them more games from our curriculum instead of repeating a game from the first day. The introduction into Sport for Social Impact was successful and CAC looks forward to developing a long-term partnership with iThemba Lethu and The Domino Foundation.