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A quiet ball of fire

Kwanele Lunga, centre, with her cycling students

Masisports is so grateful for the 12 educators who volunteer their sports coach services after school. Kwanele Lunga is one of these educators, and is inspirational in her approach to teaching and coaching. She is so dedicated and it is a privilege seeing her working with the children. Ukhanyo and MasiSports are fortunate to have educators like her in Masi. She takes part in all our activities and events – a quiet ball of fire.

She tells us a bit about herself, and the role that sport plays in the children’s lives.

“I arrived in South Africa from Zimbabwe in 2007, and when I got here I started volunteering at Ukhanyo Primary School on a Saturday. Later I was given a temporary position, and I now teach Grade 6s and I’m involved in athletics, netball, cycling and cricket. I also have my Level 1 Umpiring certificate.

I’ve always loved sports, and have tried all of them. When I started here there was athletics, netball and soccer but no field. Now it’s totally different from what it was — there are so many more facilities. There’s also been a major change in terms of coaches, and everyone wants to participate in school sport.

The kids love playing sport now, and because of it, they are a lot more confident. It helps build relationships, they interact better with us, and of course they get to have fun. And I also like using sport to teach maths – for example, I’ll involve the children in time keeping and counting.

There was one child who started participating in cycling – he was bad at maths, but the happiness he got from that sport gave him confidence, so much so I made him the cycling captain. This improved not only his marks but his focus and participation in class. And sport also increases respect throughout and leadership in the classroom . But most important thing is that sport shows children that you shouldn’t be afraid of trying. MasiSports has made a colossal difference.

Being able to participate against other schools in ‘The Valley’ also means that Masi’s children don’t feel isolated. It also helps them up their game.

When I see the children happy, and when I know that I’ve had a positive impact on someone’s life, it is such a good feeling.”