Twenty-eight promising young South African soccer players aiming to make their mark at the International Sport Federation for people with Intellectual Disabilities (INAS) World Football Championships have received some well-deserved support through Netcare’s Healthy Lifestyle Trust.
“We whole-heartedly welcome the opportunity to support the South African Sports Association for the Intellectually Impaired (SASA-II) in their bid to send a team to the INAS World Football Championships in Sweden in August 2018,” announced Peter Warrener, Group human resources director at Netcare and a trustee of Netcare’s Healthy Lifestyle Trust.
The aim of the Trust is to promote the physical well-being of South Africans through healthy lifestyle initiatives. The sponsorship of over R500 000, covers the costs of transport, accommodation and meals for the 28 soccer players for three five-day training camps ahead of the INAS World Football Championships.
“In our view the SASA-II sponsorship will unlock enormous value by developing the potential of each of these talented individuals on their way to the World Football Championships,” he adds.
Netcare has long demonstrated its commitment to promoting the creation of a society and economy that is inclusive of all South Africans, specifically focusing on broadening opportunities for people with disabilities.
To this end, Netcare launched its Sinako Project in 2012 to assist unemployed young South Africans with disabilities to enter the mainstream economy. This on-going project offers structured internships and learnerships in a number of fields for people with disabilities. The project enables people with disabilities to develop the technical skills that will afford them real opportunities in the workplace. Upon completion of the learnership or internship, many of the candidates are permanently employed within Netcare.
Towards the end of 2017, Netcare also entered into an enterprise and supplier development partnership with Disabled People South Africa (DPSA) with a grant of R2,5 million, to stimulate and support entrepreneurial growth among individuals with disabilities.
“Supporting small business growth within the disability sector is a natural progression of Netcare’s transformation endeavours, which promote the creation of a society and economy that is inclusive of all South Africans,” says Dr Nceba Ndzwayiba, general manager, enterprise and supplier development at Netcare and a trustee of the Netcare Healthy Lifestyle Trust.
Earlier this year, Netcare sponsored another sporting event for people with disabilities. The Netcare Inter Provincial Tennis Championships, held in Soweto in June, showcased the talent of wheelchair tennis players from around the country. Netcare has proudly sponsored this event since 2015.
“We are honoured to assist in supporting the development of the SASA-II football team, and hope that the international experience these players will gain through taking part in the world championships will help them to build their confidence to excel in future opportunities,” Warrener says.
“We wish these soccer stars of the future everything of the best as they continue to work hard towards their dream of excelling in the INAS World Football Championships,” Warrener concludes.