Job Maseko primary school leads the pack in indigenous games
Johannesburg, 22 October 2015 – 15 Gauteng primary schools from the South, Central and Tshwane region battled it out on the playing field on Tuesday this week at Charles Baard Stadium, Brakpan, when various indigenous sporting codes including Kgati, Dithini, Dibeke and Mgusha were a centre of the competition to crown the 2015 winners of indigenous games. Job Maseko primary school took the crown and are now the champions of indigenous games in Gauteng. In second place is Magethe Primary School from Sebokeng followed by Kaalfontein Primary School in Midrand. This is a first of such an accolade which will be an annual and an important competition in the school sport calendar.
Made possible by CCBSA Bottling (Pty) Ltd in partnership with Gauteng Department of Education (GDE), the schools indigenous games competition which involves active, fun and entertaining cultural sporting codes, were conceived to help learners live a healthy active life. This is in response to the prevalence and a rising threat of childhood obesity which is attracting considerable attention in South Africa. It has been found that the prevalence of chronic over nourishment is growing progressively among kids, and it is a public health concern.
Competitive sport is necessarily exclusive and focuses on participants that are already fit. Indigenous games have been found to be inclusive and an ideal vehicle to get learners more active in a fun and entertaining way. These indigenous games are familiar to most learners as they are often common games played in villages and townships.
Tshidi Ramogase, corporate affairs director at CCBSA say: “A partnership was established between GDE and CCBSA via a Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) signed in December 2014, allowing us to introduce indigenous games at a number of schools in the area. This included other facets of the programme that would create awareness on good nutrition and physical well-being in schools. Bringing these games within the school-setting will ensure that every kid has an opportunity to participate without feeling inadequate, as it is common with the formal sporting codes in schools.”
The purpose of indigenous games is to revive and popularise those cultural activities that have a particular appeal to vast sectors of South African communities whilst keeping learners active, and to fight obesity. Sport and recreation activities are predominantly practiced in the urban areas and are largely euro-centric, the indigenous games are essential in order to get South Africans kids more active.
Following the success of this pilot programme, the intention is to roll out this initiative across the nation.