Passage to Portugal for Phillips

2018-06-12 06:01
Anthea Adriaanse, Thurston Phillips and Jennifer Phillips.PHOTO: Earl Haupt

Anthea Adriaanse, Thurston Phillips and Jennifer Phillips.PHOTO: Earl Haupt

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Thurston Phillips is off to Portugal.

The 10-year-old Grade 4 learner at Die Duine Primary School is one of the boys selected to represent the RB6 group of boys who will participate in the IberCup in Estoril next month.

However, the passage to Portugal did not come without its fair share of challenges.

Thurston and his family only found out a few months ago that he had been selected to join the group on the trip and were tasked with raising R30 000 by the end of May.

Concerted efforts were made to raise the funds, but it was not until Die Duine principal, Anthea Adriaanse, posted a plea on Facebook that the ball started rolling at a quicker pace. Although Thurston will be representing a club, Adriaanse says it will be the first time a child from their school will have an opportunity like this.

“What I did was that I put a post on Facebook appealing to the people for help. My husband also sent out an appeal to his friends. A few people came to the party,” she says.

Thurston’s mother, Jennifer Phillips, was ecstatic at the news that her son would be able to practise his passion abroad at one of junior football’s most sought-after tournaments. While she is relieved that they managed to raise the funds required, she is grateful to those who have helped her and her son seize this opportunity.

“For now I can actually breathe. In the beginning when we had to raise funds it wasn’t easy, because we found out late. We found out at the end of February.

“We had a lot of disappointments, but then the principal stepped in. She posted a message on Facebook and the response was very good. That is the reason why he is going to Portugal.

“For me it is quite exciting, because as the time is getting closer, the butterflies are going in my stomach. For now [we are] sending him alone with the group – unfortunately his dad cannot go with. He is quite excited and it is an experience for him. I really think that he can learn a lot from there and come back with a new vision and be more positive without asking so many questions,” says Phillips.

“I am really grateful towards Mrs Adriaanse. I can’t even express how grateful I am now, but in due time I am going to show my appreciation to her,” she adds.

Adriaanse adds that the message the school would like to share with other schools, parents and pupils in the area is that talent needs to be focused on and honed so that those children can realise their potential and live out their dreams.

“Sometimes they don’t see it, and we as teachers need to encourage that participation. We don’t know what skill we may unearth and how that is going to affect their future. To schools and other people, you would want to encourage them to involve themselves in our schools,” says Adriaanse.

She adds that schools have to find creative ways of creating a space to provide certain opportunities for the children they teach.

“Businesses need to get in touch with what is happening at school. There is a programme called Partners for Possibility. They take somebody in corporate and they partner that person with a principal, especially at our disadvantaged schools. In that way we can learn to network, not by getting things for the school, but how we can go about securing funds.

“Partnering with these people so that we can learn those type of skills and how to go about approaching businesses in circumstances like this where there is a child in need or whether there is something that we want to do at school which will benefit the school or the broader community.”

Phillips urges other parents to seize opportunities which present themselves to their children, even when it seems as if those opportunities will be impossible to obtain.

“Even if it looks like there is no way that they can achieve it or the child won’t be able to do it, my experience and advice to other parents is not to give up. Communication is the key. There are people out there who really want to help, but you must be bold and courageous in order to communicate. You will never know who you are communicating to and what their response will be. There are a lot of people out there who want to help children.”

Thurston Phillips is off to Portugal.

The 10-year-old Grade 4 learner at Die Duine Primary School is one of the boys selected to represent the RB6 group of boys who will participate in the IberCup in Estoril next month.

However, the passage to Portugal did not come without its fair share of challenges.

Thurston and his family only found out a few months ago that he had been selected to join the group on the trip and were tasked with raising R30 000 by the end of May.

Concerted efforts were made to raise the funds, but it was not until Die Duine principal, Anthea Adriaanse, posted a plea on Facebook that the ball started rolling at a quicker pace.

Although Thurston will be representing a club, Adriaanse says it will be the first time a child from their school will have an opportunity like this.

“What I did was that I put a post on Facebook appealing to the people for help. My husband also sent out an appeal to his friends. A few people came to the party,” she says.

Thurston’s mother, Jennifer Phillips, was ecstatic at the news that her son would be able to practise his passion abroad at one of junior football’s most sought-after tournaments. While she is relieved that they managed to raise the funds required, she is grateful to those who have helped her and her son seize this opportunity.

“For now I can actually breathe. In the beginning when we had to raise funds it wasn’t easy, because we found out late. We found out at the end of February.

“We had a lot of disappointments, but then the principal stepped in. She posted a message on Facebook and the response was very good. That is the reason why he is going to Portugal.

“For me it is quite exciting, because as the time is getting closer, the butterflies are going in my stomach.

“For now [we are] sending him alone with the group – unfortunately his dad cannot go with. He is quite excited and it is an experience for him.

“I really think that he can learn a lot from there and come back with a new vision and be more positive without asking so many questions,” says Phillips.

“I am really grateful towards Mrs Adriaanse. I can’t even express how grateful I am now, but in due time I am going to show my appreciation to her,” she adds.

Adriaanse adds that the message the school would like to share with other schools, parents and pupils in the area is that talent needs to be focused on and honed so that those children can realise their potential and live out their dreams.

“Sometimes they don’t see it, and we as teachers need to encourage that participation. We don’t know what skill we may unearth and how that is going to affect their future.

“To schools and other people, you would want to encourage them to involve themselves in our schools,” says Adriaanse.

She adds that schools have to find creative ways of creating a space to provide certain opportunities for the children they teach.

“Businesses need to get in touch with what is happening at school.

“There is a programme called Partners for Possibility. They take somebody in corporate and they partner that person with a principal, especially at our disadvantaged schools. In that way we can learn to network, not by getting things for the school, but how we can go about securing funds.

“Partnering with these people so that we can learn those type of skills and how to go about approaching businesses in circumstances like this where there is a child in need or whether there is something that we want to do at school which will benefit the school or the broader community.”

Phillips urges other parents to seize opportunities which present themselves to their children, even when it seems as if those opportunities will be impossible to obtain.

“Even if it looks like there is no way that they can achieve it or the child won’t be able to do it, my experience and advice to other parents is not to give up. Communication is the key.

“There are people out there who really want to help, but you must be bold and courageous in order to communicate. You will never know who you are communicating to and what their response will be. There are a lot of people out there who want to help children.”

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