Passing the Baton
Springtime is here, the weather is getting better and some of us are starting to get into shape for summer - maybe even for the Rio 2016 Paralympics?
I hope everyone was as intrigued and excited by the Paralympics as I was. How thrilling it was to be a part of each stroke in the pool, each stride of the track racing, each leap, each push - in fact each and every moment that was broadcast! The 4 x 100m relay really did it for me, and got me thinking about what can be achieved when we work together.
Whether you had the luxury of pay channels or were limited to the SABC channel that showed the prowess of our country’s elite athletes, we all had a view into what can be achieved against all odds. The Paralympians made a whole lot of people very proud by achieving the results that they did. I acknowledge and commend the sacrifice and the effort that each member of Team SA 2012 has put into preparing for and performing in London. Congratulations and well done to all athletes, management and coaching staff.
This is one major bucket list item for me but what are the realistic chances of me representing my country in the sport that I play, wheelchair rugby? Currently? Impossible! Not to undermine local wheelchair rugby talent, but we are in the Oceania zone, a zone dominated by New Zealand, Australia and Japan who, by the looks of things, will be at Rio in 2016. However, if were to develop an Africa Zone then we could also qualify. Please, anyone, take up this challenge and pursue this possibility.
I was captivated by the basketball commentary on Facebook that Rolling Inspirations’ Sandra de Oliviera provided. It was as if we were right there because she kept everyone updated with the scores and progress of the game and did it all via Facebook! This is another proof of the advantages of social media platforms.
The dedication of the Sports Ministry, the equalising of the financial reward by SASCOC and the coverage by the media are but a few of the motivating aspects that should encourage every person with a disability to get active and participate in a sport, whether it is a Paralympic sport or not. It is this kind of action and interaction that should be passed on, as the baton gets passed and each one plays their part.
Let us take up the challenge, let us do our bit and let us run with a positive spirit. Whether you are good at initiating projects, whether you excel in giving support or can finish off and complete. One can take this concept into each and every part of our lives and complement each other as we work towards achieving our dreams.