Celebrating Girls & Women In Sport

Girls are the future of our society, it is essential that we focus on their wellbeing, and this is exactly what Scottsville Secondary School in Kraaifontein, Western Cape, is proudly doing this year.

As the host of The Sports Trust Community Cycle Race on 9 August 2017, the school is extending an invitation to everyone to come and participate in this celebration of girls, women and youth in sport on this National Women’s Day.

The objective of the Sports Trust Community Cycle Races, launched in 2015, is to extend cycling to under-resourced schools and communities in the Western Cape, and to provide the youth here with an opportunity to enhance their education through sport, which has a positive impact on their life, wellbeing and future.

These community cycle races go hand in hand with the highly successful Schools Development Cycling Programme, which The Sports Trust has managed for the past 12 years together with its funders: the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport and Nedbank. The programme has taken the sport of cycling into 12 high schools and their communities in the Western Cape, notably the Cape Flats, Kraaifontein, the West Coast and the Boland.

Mike Tippett, who manages this programme for The Sports Trust, says: ‘This schools development programme has grown from strength to strength, with some of our cyclists selected in July for the Western Province School Squad. The participating communities are highly supportive of the programme and eagerly await the community cycling races, which make for a thoroughly enjoyable day that also includes other sports and wellbeing informational events.

‘We are really pleased to be able to say that our cycling programme has also attracted an increasing number of female cyclists who will be showcasing their abilities this Wednesday. Overall, the programme is about creating opportunities and life skills training, which exposes our youth to activities and experiences that will help them to become our future leaders.’

Franklyn Fortuin, teacher and cycling coach at Scottsville Secondary School says: ‘Our School’s motto is “Primus in Omnibus”, meaning “First in Everything” and we do our best in sport, academics, culture and making a success of our learners’ lives. We have an active team of 12 cyclists participating in the programme, including three girls who enthusiastically take part and are committed to the cycling skills training.

‘Our message to all the girls and women of South Africa this National Women’s Day is ‘You are special, you are the heartbeat of our homes, community and our nation. Do not allow anyone to take away your pride. We would also like to acknowledge all our teachers, community leaders and coaches for your dedication to our young people.

‘As a school we want to thank The Sports Trust, the Western Cape, Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Nedbank and all other role-players who are willing to invest in the young lives of our children and to uplift the morale of our people.’

Quotes from Scottsville Secondary School cyclists:

Michaela Maneville, Grade 9, age 16

‘I am doing cycling as a sport to keep myself fit. It also helps me with discipline and commitment because you need to be committed to your sport and your team. The sport has also helped me to be more dedicated to my schoolwork. I am not only doing cycling as a hobby but to keep my mind clear from the bad influences of our community. I really want to encourage girls to join the sport because it takes you places.’

Junelia De Wee, Grade 8, age 14

‘This is my first year of cycling. I find the sport very interesting and exciting. It takes me places where I have never been before. I do this as a hobby to keep myself busy. It gives me the opportunity to meet new people and to enjoy the outdoors and especially nature. I still have to learn a lot from the sport but I am willing to give my best because I can only benefit from it.’

Nathan James, Grade 10, age 15

‘Cycling helped me to get new vision in life. It keeps me away from all the negative things in our community. It takes me places where I have never been before. I joined the WP cycling team during the June holidays and it was a great experience. I have learned a lot and will definitely work harder to become a stronger and better cyclist.’

Message from Tobie Badenhorst, Head of Group Sponsorships and Cause Marketing at Nedbank:

Nelson Mandela believed in the power of sport to inspire young men and women and to change the world. Each year the Schools Development Cycling Programme has supplied bikes and supported the training and participation of up to 220 learners from 12 high schools in communities in the Western Cape, including  Kraaifontein’s Scottsville Secondary.

To encourage greater participation in cycling, in 2015 The Sports Trust Community Cycle Races were launched in the development cyclists’ communities. We host a number of community cycle races each year and we encourage everyone to participate in or attend to experience the camaraderie, fun, competitive racing and incredible community support. People come out in full force and the cyclists are cheered and encouraged all the way.

On this Women’s Day, we are especially proud to welcome the group of female development cyclists we have recruited from our participating schools. The programme coordinators have worked hard to encourage girl learners to participate in our cycling programme, and this year we feel we are succeeding.  Our heartfelt thanks go to all those who made the Schools Development Cycling Programme and  The Sports Trust Community Cycling Programme the successes they are today. They are a tribute to Madiba and to all the values he attributed to sport in his legendary quote:

“Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than government in breaking down racial barriers.”

Western Cape Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Anroux Marais, says:

‘Western Cape Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport said, “Through our partnership with the Sports Trust, we have witnessed first-hand how pivotal it is to sustainably support developmental cycling at grassroots level, especially in our vulnerable communities. In creating this enabling environment, our youth and for this event specifically, our girl child riders are exposed to a healthier lifestyle as opposed to participating in the various social ills plaguing our communities. Against all odds and difficult circumstances, the participating riders made the personal choice to participate in the sport of cycling and in that way enriched their own livelihoods, that of their families and communities as a whole. Their choice to dedicate their time and effort to the positive development of the self, afforded them the support of the Sports Trust, Nedbank and the Western Cape Government in realizing their own potential and to optimize their excellence”.


The Development Cycling Schools and Development Club participating in the Saldanha race and this year’s development cycling programme are:

Cape Metro Region

Mitchells Plain: Beacon Hill Secondary, Oval North Secondary, Tafelsig Secondary

Manenberg:         Phoenix Secondary, Hanover Park: Crystal High

Khayelitsha:         Matthew Goniwe Memorial High

Kraaifontein:      Scottsville Secondary

West Coast:         Diazville Senior Secondary School (Saldanha), Steynville Secondary School (Piketberg)

Boland:                 Orchard Primary (De Doorns), De Doorns Development Club (Development Club)

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