Disabled teenagers to compete in ‘Mile’

2016-01-27 06:00
The group of disabled teenagers and lifeguards who will compete in the Midmar Mile. Photo: tania sandberg

The group of disabled teenagers and lifeguards who will compete in the Midmar Mile. Photo: tania sandberg

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

THE eThekwini Municipality and Shoprite Checker’s drive to equip and qualify a group of 10 disabled teenagers as lifeguards is in full swing and now a week into practicing it was decided that the teenagers will compete in the Midmar Mile on 13 and 14 February.

“This is not the only group that will be competing, we also have another group of 10 teenagers from disadvantaged backgrounds who are training, under Lenny Pillay, at the Tiger Rocks pool in Isipingo. These children are at the advanced stage of training and will be entered for the junior lifeguard award [at Midmar Mile] ,” Amanzimtoti beach superintendant, Jayce Govender said.

Govender added this is the fourth year that he has been involved with this initiative. In previous years he trained street children from Mtombu and Dakota and Lotus Park.

Govender said they split the Amanzimtoti group into two groups - one group is focussing on fitness training, the other groups is trained in stroke correction and the finer skills.

Blind surfer, Danito Mondlani, is doing specialised training and learning how to swim.
“He could not swim two weeks ago and now he is swimming across the pool. The lifeguard who is training him has designed a special way to give him direction, he picks up the vibration in the water in front of him,” Govender explained.

“It is great, I am having lots of fun. I am feeling more confident each day and can take what life has to throw at me,” Danito remarked.

“I am feeling fit and swimming much better,” said 13-year-old Josh Dann.

His brother, 15-year-old Timothy Dann said: “It is great, my swimming has improved.”

For the Midmar Mile, Shoprite-Checkers have sponsored 25 pairs of swimming goggles, rash vests, swimming T-shirts, childrens­’ supplement of food, meals and Energade. eThekwini Municipality has provided the lifeguards, the facility and the transport to take children to the Midmar Mile.

“Other than helping the children by teaching them important skills and assisting them to reach their dream, I found the experience has been fulfilling and therapeutic for us, the lifeguards, to train them.
“It showed us a different side of life, we have everything and we complain every day. If we are in contact with the children it makes us realise how fortunate we are. This initiative has made the lifeguards more compassionate and understanding, loving and caring,” Govender said.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.