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Netball and soccer teams line up in preparation for the day’s matches. (Photos: supplied)

De Beers to invest R1,1 mil in sport development

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De Beers Venetia Mine recently donated soccer and netball equipment as well as clothing to 11 primary schools from the Bahananwa Circuit of Blouberg who will be participating in the Dream Fields league for the first time this year.
In addition Venetia Mine Contracting Partner, JCB, provided financing to extend the programme to an additional two schools, Modulathoko and Mashie Primary Schools as part of their Corporate Social Investment (CSI) programme in the region.
The Ponahalo De Beers Community Trust has set aside R1.1 million to be spent giving learners in rural schools access to sport as part of the Dream Fields Programme. Since launching the programme in October 2015, De Beers have established a league with 28 participating schools all of which are located in the Blouberg District.
The participants are in Grades 4 to 7 and compete in netball and soccer with weekly training and matches. Dream Fields provides equipment in the form of football boots, kit and balls, netball kit, shoes and balls, equipment for running and training Five-a-Side leagues as well as miniature goal posts, trophies and medals.
The programme also plays an important role in training teachers to become coaches. To date 24 coaches from local schools have completed the South African Football Association Grass Roots Course and 36 have successfully completed the Netball South Africa Pre-Level Course. This ensures that instructors are well-equipped to coach their teams and transfer skills, strategy and techniques to the youth making their teams competitive in the league environment.
“Dream Fields is a great initiative which we are proud to support” says Josephine Pieters, Corporate Affairs Manager at De Beers, Venetia Mine.
“Sports development is vital to creating self-esteem, social relationships, leadership skills and physical development in our young people. By supporting this programme in the mining community of Blouberg we are creating healthy, well-rounded adults who can contribute positively to our society.”

Story: MARKI FRANKEN
>>marki.observer@gmail.com

Madikwa Primary School proudly display their school’s banner which reads ‘Thank you very much. Our dreams will become a reality’.

Cynthia Khoali, Venetia Mine Senior Corporate Affairs Officer for Community Development, with a participating girls’ netball team.

Participants in the Dream Fields Programme display a banner of appreciation.