Field of dreams

2015-05-05 06:00
The Good Hope Local Football Association in Imizamo Yethu is working on a bold plan to use soccer to address social ills in their communities. 


The Good Hope Local Football Association in Imizamo Yethu is working on a bold plan to use soccer to address social ills in their communities. PHOTO: MONIQUE DUVAL

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“Out of the shebeen and onto the field.”

This is the plan for Imizamo Yethu residents to help young and old make good use of the new sports complex.

The complex which includes a new club house, changing rooms, showers and ablution facilities, a first-aid room, kitchen and communal space was officially opened last month by City of Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille .

During a visit to the complex last week, Sitembile Jongiwe, coordinator of the Good Hope Local Football Association (LFA) said they were happy with the new complex.

With 18 soccer teams across various age groups, Jongiwe says they have seen membership grow with the new facility.

“More youngsters are signing up and doing something productive in the afternoon. We host training sessions for the various groups and we have even seen more fathers join the seniors team.”

Jongiwe says residents in Imizamo Yethu are plagued with various socio-economic challenges including poverty, alcoholism, drug abuse and crime.

To counter this the association is trying to improve the lives of children by getting them to take part in soccer after school.

“We want to show them there is a better way. You see them on the street and in the shebeens.

“This is not good for our community. We also address the fathers and the older brothers and get them out of the shebeens and onto the field,” he says.

One way the association wants to counter these problems is by hosting more tournaments where the community get involved and host other teams.

With an array of challenges, Jongiwe explains the lack of funds often prohibits teams from participating in tournaments outside of Hout Bay.

“The main problem is travelling. Because parents cannot afford the taxi fare, our teams often do not play outside the area.

“We also have a girls team, but there are not others here in Hout Bay so they have to go all the way to Mitchell’s Plain but, even that is a problem,” he says.

For this reason the association hopes to draw teams into Hout Bay for matches and improve the skills of players.

They have made an appeal for sponsors to assist players to progress. “We have very little and there is no money. We do this for the children to make a change, but we need kit, balls and other things.


If you would like to help, call Jongiwe on 082 974 5883 or email

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