Football and netball development teams in Molepolole were major beneficiaries of the Southern Africa Postal Operators Association (SAPOA) games that were hosted in the village this past week.
The games, which were attended by postal workers from Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland, took place from the 26th to the 28th of last month.
The donation of the kits, which happened on Wednesday, after the games’ official opening, aptly reflected the theme of the games; “Our Postal Legacy Lives on.”
Speaking in an interview with The Telegraph, SAPOA Games Organising Committee representative, Keletso Benjamin, said the kits were part of SAPOA’s initiative to leave a legacy wherever their games are hosted.
“The donation was part of the SAPOA games’ Community Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives. Whenever we have games of this nature, we want to leave something for the community to remember us,” Benjamin explained.
He said as SAPOA, one of their mottos is to be ‘an integral part of the communities they are working with.’ He said as such, they are keen to undertake initiatives that promote youth empowerment, which they believe can be partly achieved through sports development at both schools and community levels.’
Concerning the criteria used to identify the beneficiaries, Benjamin said they worked hand in hand with the Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC).
“We asked the BNSC if they knew of any team in need of our help in Molepolole and they put us in contact with their ‘Re Ba Bona Ha’ Sports Development Officer. We then had the opportunity to meet development teams and their coaches, who influenced our decision,” the SAPOA Games Organising Committee representative explained.
From the process, football, netball and volleyball were chosen as teams to help. However, to determine their needs, Benjamin said they watched the teams in training, where they realised there was acute shortage of training gear.
“For football, we bought a full complement of kits and soccer boots. For netball, we got a full kit and bibs while volleyball received nets. All these codes then received balls,” Benjamin said.
On other issues still related to sports development, Benjamin reiterated that Botswana Post may in future consider adopting a school or development team to support. He however said these plans, should they come to fruition, will be done through the Botswana Post Foundation. So far, the foundation has been helping largely in education related projects.
Meanwhile, on to the games themselves, Botswana Post are the winners of this year’s edition of the SAPOA Games. Botswana won the football and athletics categories, while Lesotho won in Volleyball and Namibia in Netball. Botswana also came as runner ups in women’s volleyball and in netball.