Shooting the breeze

2016-06-22 06:00

AS a child from a poor background that grew up in the broken family, sport was an important part in my life.

Although our community around Edendale had only limited sports resources, I used to have peace of mind.

My interest and passion was mainly in athletics and soccer. Being on the sport fields with my teammates or school mates was happiness, out of this world and brought peace in my life, rather than being at home.

In many cases, my team managers, coaches and older players treated by me like my father, uncles and brothers did. I grew up in front of them and they helped me grow up to become a man and an athlete.

Sports saved me from a lot of social ills and made me a respected community member. Even today I believe that sport can play an important role in saving our generation from social ills and abuse.

Sport is a simple, cheap, straight forward and powerful tool to unite communities from different backgrounds, religions and race.

This week I was touched when I watched local youngsters from around Panorama training without goalposts in the Panorama School grounds. Apparently the ones they had are gone, old, rotten and they fell apart.

As a community member, a passionate community activist and parent, I am concerned. In short it means these youngsters are training without the basic requirements of learning football.

If the community can stand up, raise their hands, be counted and stand united, the youngsters problems can be easily solved.

So to the good people out there, please donate a set of goalposts, soccer kit and balls, all for a good cause. I can be contacted at jerryb.barnes228@gmail.com or

083 521 9553 and 8 Redwood Crescent, Panorama Gardens, Pietermaritzburg.

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