Rural and Farms Sports Tournament showcases sporting talent
This prestigious annual sporting event started in 2002 and today sees over 22 000 learners participating in inter‐house competitions during the year, which culminates in a three day long National Tournament. This year over 2000 participants will be uniting for the opening ceremony at the Boksburg Stadium on Monday 1 October.
Dignitaries, sport celebrities, former‐Miss South Africa, Bokang Montsane and Transnet Group Chief Executive, Brian Molefe, will all be attending the opening ceremony and showing their support for these rising sports stars of the Rural and Farms Sport Tournament. Although South Africa is rich in sporting talent, much of our potential talent sits undiscovered.
In order for the country’s future stars to be discovered, talented youngsters must first be identified, nurtured and developed into the heroes of tomorrow.
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. 5000 learners were selected to participate in the four regional tournaments where that figure was further narrowed down to 2000. These learners will be participating in the final, the National Rural and Farms Sports Development Tournament that commences bright and early Tuesday for the duration of the week.
Annually, Transnet spends between R140 million and R160 million directly through the Foundation and the other R20 million through other divisions. 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. This year’s event begins at 17h00 on 1 October with an opening ceremony including an Olympic style procession, traditional dancers, live bands and a fireworks display. Competitors, sports scouts, media and dignitaries will spend the next three days witnessing up‐and‐coming sports talent in all four disciplines.