Philanthropy and tourism

2015-09-24 06:00

LAST week I had the privilege of visiting the impressive Enxolobeni Primary School at Oribi Gorge.

The purpose of the visit was in support of a wonderful initiative through the Burry Stander Foundation which has provided the school with a number of MTB cycles and future assistance as a means of encouraging cycling activity in what is an ideal area for off-road cycling and events.

Who knows another MTB champion­ may emanate from this initiative?

MTB events are springing up all over the place and we see merit in support to grow participation through our sports tourism programmes. The philanthropy shown by the foundation will, I believe, assist in developing people, the sport and our destination as a must visit place for the ultra energetic.

Our role at the school was to provide pupils with reusable reflector wrist bands as a safety item when they walk along country roads.

Naturally we briefed the well-turned-out children on the importance of looking after our visitors and cyclists and/or excursionists who often traverse the scenic, undulating and landscapes that abound at Oribi Gorge.

What also impressed me was that some of our hospitality members have become involved with the school and this is an indication of the goodwill segments of our tourism industry have towards their local communities.

For me this was a feel-good day because it is clear that people from sport and tourism are doing their bit for our youth at schools who may not have the resources to the extent that many urban schools have.

So if you see local boys and girls enthusiastically riding MTBs near Lake Eland, we can thank the Stander family, and their supporters, for their commitment to encouraging rural children to get involved in this increasingly popular pastime.

Surely paradise for people pushing the pedal?

So if you see local boys and girls enthusiastically riding MTBs near Lake Eland, we can thank the Stander family, and their supporters, for their commitment to encouraging rural children to get involved in this increasingly popular pastime

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