Organisers of the annual Coaching for Conservation’s week-long Conservation football camp in Maun have lined up two local celebrities for the event.
In an effort to contribute to the success and prestige of the event, it has been confirmed that Karabo Sampson, Miss Botswana 2011, and international professional soccer player, Dipsy Selolwane, would act as ambassadors for the programme.
The event was previously graced by Lucas Radebe, the retired South African international footballer.
Speaking of her role as ambassador of Coaching for Conservation, Sampson said she was happy she had a chance to transform the lives of the young people.
“I am truly humbled by my new role as a C4C ambassador. I am relishing the opportunity to help transform the lives of young people in Botswana,” Sampson said. “I would especially like to challenge all the young ladies in Botswana to embrace sport in their lives, just like I did. You don’t have to be a super star athlete to reap the benefits.”
She explained that sport has instilled discipline in her and the dedication and determination to succeed in life.
“And even more importantly, sport has taught me the value of team work, both on and off the field,” Sampson revealed.
On the other hand, Dipsy Selolwane, who recently announced his retirement from international football, said he was honoured to be part of Coaching for Conservation.
“We share the same principles and ideas of using sport as a way to reach out,” Selolwane, who plays in the South African Premier League, said. “Football is the number one sport on the planet so it is great that we can use it as a platform to educate our people and the rest of the world about conservation.”
The football camp will host 720 Standard 5 children from the Maun region, and take place from 25 to 28 June at the Maun Sports Complex.
It will conclude on 28 June with a “Walk for Wildlife” through town, a parade of kids, sponsors, supporters and coaches dressed as their favourite predator or soccer star.
Radebe was previously a trainer and coach for the camp, which blends soccer skills to wildlife protection.
He described the conservation project as ‘a great programme’, which teaches skills for the upcoming generation.
“It prepares the upcoming generation on how to better their skills and how to be successful,” he said.
Radebe added that the 250 school kids that attended the camp are fortunate because they have role models.
“This is when you can see the talent; there are coaches, support of government and companies and the future is bright,” added Radebe, saying Botswana football can improve if these kids get quality in terms of sponsorship.
“The kids have gotten the message and you can see they are upbeat, which is great,” he added.
In 2010, the usually quiet village of Maun was awakened from slumber when Joe Jonas, an American musician, went on stage to cheer up people in the stadium.