Mpumelelo, one of the local children from Masakhane, joined the hockey programme some years ago at the age of 12. His younger brother was playing soccer but he was always drawn to hockey and developed a passion for the hockey programme. He became an indispensable asset to the team, as he was a great goalie.
At the age of 14, Mpumelelo suddenly went through a difficult time. He stopped coming to practice and teachers from the school reported that Mpumelelo was having difficulties at school. The Foundation coaching team remained in contact with him throughout this time and after a year, Mpumelelo made a comeback! We had the old Mpumelelo back.
At 16, Mpumelelo is now a mentor to other youth in the hockey programme and now plays an active role in coaching the girls hockey teams. He has taken this added responsibility seriously and now the aim is to ultimately assist him to become a hockey coach in his own right.
The hockey programme plays an important role in walking the difficult journey of growing up with the community youth. Such as in Mpumelelo’s case, the hockey project provides a positive, constructive space for the youth to escape their worlds realities. The Grootbos Foundation hockey programme now has over 300 children participating at the various hockey training sites in the Overberg!