Saturday, February 20, 2010

HIV/AIDS awareness events to qualify for the International Finals Tournament in August


Field Development

Two local soccer players were employed for a week to cut the grass for a new filed to make two full soccer fields available for the tournament.

A soccer team from London, UK called ‘Kensington Dragons’ and a local team called ‘Mdumbi Raiders’ spent a full day making the finishing touches by levelling the bumps, marking the lines, putting up new goal posts, filling in the holes and putting up the nets. These two groups did the work voluntarily.

The Soccer Teams

6 teams from 60 qualified from the Wild Coast area.
1 team was invited to participate from London, UK called ‘Kensington Dragons' (picture below)
1 team was invited to participate from WSU, Butterworth.

WSU were unable to attend due to late notice and Young Chiccos from Mankosi Village, Wild Coast entered as a standby team. They were chosen from a 4-team tournament in which they came 2nd to the Kensington Dragons in the week leading up to the tournament.


The Groups

The 8 teams were split into two groups, A and B.

The two guest teams were placed in separate groups.
The two teams from the Mankosi area made a toss to decide which team was in which group.
The 4 teams from Canzibe area made a toss to decide which two teams were in which group.

The Kick-off

The first match started at 9, while the rest of the teams were being picked up by the TransCape vehicles. A professional commentator was employed for two days to comment on all the action and add to the excitement of the matches. Having two fields made it possible to increase the length of the matches and each team play against more teams.

The first half of the day gave a mix of scores and results and with the point system there were no definite qualifiers, just raised tension! At 12 there was a break for teams to have lunch in Mdumbi Backpackers kitchen with 3 employed staff to cater for all the hungry players.

The New HIV/AIDS Drama and Testing

A new HIV/AIDS awareness drama was performed for the crowds. The drama gives the story of an orphan who is being looked after by her auntie and is treated badly. This drives here to spend time at the Shebeen drinking, stealing and trying to forget her problems. She also has HIV and stops taking her medication. The story ends with her dying and the auntie left to pick up the pieces.

Despite a strong, serious message the team managed to do it in such a way that gets a few laughs and the people to understand the importance of a positive home life and taking your medication. This message reaches out to parents and kids to take responsibility in whatever position they’re in at home and social life.

Throughout the day a total of 87 people got tested for HIV/AIDS and got counselling and information on how to get the treatment they need in the future.

As a special feature to the day, a music group from Port St. Johns were driven down to the field with guitars and unique voices to give the crowd a fresh sound. They performed for the whole day and got a great response!

During the lunch break there was an 11-a-side girl’s match for half an hour which included young local stars as well as 3 girls from London, UK. It was great to watch but unfortunately no goals to celebrate!

End of Day Results

After an intense day of matches only two of the 4 teams from each group could qualify in the Semi-Finals matches the following day. Unfortunately for them, the team from London, UK called ‘Kensington Dragons’ came 3rd in their group and were unable to qualify for the next round. The standby team called ‘Young Chiccos’ also came 4th in their group and went home early.

The teams who qualified ended up being two teams from the Mankosi area and two teams from the Canzibe area. The draw made it that they play the team from their area making the final a definite Mankosi/Canzibe battle!


Once the day’s matches were complete, the four teams from Canzibe area were guided to accommodation run by local people near Mdumbi Backpackers and provided with dinner and a large breakfast the next morning. This was funded by the budget given to TransCape by the Danish Embassy and meant that 3 local people were able to host the teams and bring some income into the family.



The day started with a Semi-final match between Ngoyini and Shining Stars. The match was very tight as they both have a history of being two of the best teams in the Mankosi area. After a tough battle, Ngoyini came out winners with a 2:1 victory (picture below).

The next Semi-Final match was between Super Eagles and Young Stars. In the previous stages, Super Eagles clearly had a stronger edge than other teams but were not against easy opposition. Young Stars, despite having a young squad, had always managed to dominate all the matches they played and were not going to go out without a fight. Both teams played hard and Young Stars managed to get a goal but it was no match for the 3 that Super Eagles put away and threw them straight into the Final against Ngoyini.


The drama was performed again for those who missed the first day and they got an equally amazing response. The music group from Port St. Johns stayed over-night and also gave the crowd a second day of treats!

Testing and Results for HIV/AIDS

A total of 45 people got tested for HIV/AIDS on the second day of the tournament and a total of 20 people over the two days were positive. Those people will soon have a support group to attend and get the support/information they need to life a long, healthy life. This is our great hope! Picture below is of the testing tents and the Transcape Prevention Team counsellors encouraging people to test.
3rd/4th Place

Before the Final, the 3rd/4th place match took place to see who would win and obtain the R500 prize money up for grabs. Young Stars squeezed in the only goal of the match and beat Shining Stars by the small but significant-enough margin.


Ngoyini were at a slight advantage as they were playing on a field they knew very well and it was Super Eagles first time to play on the Mdumbi Field. Both teams however had already had a full hour of play time and were feeling the bumps and sores already! Picture below is of the Final action.
The final was rough and challenges were coming in from all angles. There was a mix up with submitting the substitutions to the referee at half-time and the Super Eagles were only able to make two in the match. This didn’t stop them from playing their hearts out and their number 5 scored two excellent, well-deserved goals. These were the only two of the match and Super Eagles took the convincing win all the way to the trophy table!

Prize Giving

Earlier in the year there was a competition in the surrounding schools to make a soccer logo for the event. There were 5 winners, 4 of which were transported to Mdumbi by a TransCape vehicle to be part of the finals and prize giving (picture below). The competition winners along with the TransCape Chairperson were presenting the prizes.

First there were 6 individual winners getting prizes such as: Best Defensive Player, Best Goalkeeper, Best Goal, Golden Boot, Man of the Final Match and Player of the Tournament. With sponsored equipment from Kensington Dragons, Images and from the TransCape budget given by the Danish Embassy these individuals received a certificate, a trophy, a TRSC10 t-shirt and a soccer ball. Picture below is of the Best Goalkeeper from Super Eagles.

The team prizes were next and 4th place Shining Stars received some soccer cups, photos and certificates. For 3rd place the team Young Stars got the same plus R500. For 2nd place the team Ngoyini got the same plus R1,000 (picture below is of the coach giving a speech to the crowd and his players). The 1st place team Super Eagles got the same plus R2,000 and the TRSC10 trophy.

The Super Eagles from Canzibe coached by Sogwera obtained first prize in the International Finals, which included 60 teams from around the Wild Coast area (picture below). They celebrated their victory with singing and dancing and left with memories of an exciting 9 months being part of the ‘TransCape Rural Soccer Challenge 2010’.

A huge thank you to everyone who has been part of this event, whether directly or behind the scenes. Just through this soccer event over 1400 have been tested for HIV/AIDS and found out their status, which is just the first step in the TransCape strategy to positively impact the Ngqeleni area of the Transkei in the area of health care.

A total of 62 soccer teams were included in this event and over 10,000 people attending the events. It has been an amazing time of celebration, laughter and tears finishing with a hugely successful International Finals. The HIV/AIDS Program will continue to run for 2010/2011 and a new Sports/Education Development Program (specialising in soccer) will be officially launched in the near future.

Please visit to see the other projects TransCape are being funded for and the exciting things that are happening in this part of the globe!

Steve Bollon

Soccer Co-ordinator, Transcape NPO
Personal: 071 563 8923 Office: 083 458 0424
Email address:


MEVANA VS MAZION 2:2 (5:3 PENS) = 7:5


As it was a Sunday, there was low attendance in the morning but soon enough the
masses started pouring to the field to witness these important matches from the travelling teams.

Kaelo Worldwide Media from Durban came to join us and took interviews and footage from the tournament to broadcast on SABC1 on 06Jun. This was a great experience for our team and for the other projects, which are part of TransCape.

The first match was between a local side called Shining Stars and a travelling team called Inzinyoka. Although both teams were strong, Shining Stars showed their years of experience and dominated the match winning with a comfortable 4:0 score.

The drama was performed after the first match despite the low attendance but still a staggering 127 people got tested. This showed that our program in previous events had made enough impact and awareness that people were comfortable enough to find out their status and get tested without a need for extra encouragement.

Mevana and Mazion were both travelling from far and it was a treat for the community to see these teams show how soccer is played in different villages. They gave a great performance and it was an entertaining match. There was scoring back and forth until the final whistle sealed the score at 2:2 causing the final decision to be made at the penalty spot. Mevana’s goalkeeper pulled off some excellent saves and helped his team to win the match and qualification into the final round.

Ngoyini, another local squad and the leading team in the village had the support from the crowd and the extra edge against their opposition Tigers. Tigers were a rough team and gave Ngoyini a tough match. After Ngoyini scored the first goal, Tigers equalised on a very close offside decision not called by the referee and the half time score was 1:1. Ngoyini were sweating with fear of conceding another goal but scored their second and relaxed a bit. They finally scored their third goal and finished the match with a nice 3:1 win.

We are very excited to see these teams in August and will just take these next few months to prepare for one of the biggest tournaments, which has ever taken place in Tshani Village!





The Semi-Final Knockouts consisted of three matches per day on Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, the matches took place at a venue called Magojweni. The road to the venue was terrible but although the field lacked grass in sections it was very flat and generous in size.

The matches commenced with the first two teams, one of which was picked up by our TransCape vehicle and dropped off in time for a pre-match briefing, boot check and submission of the reserves list. Both teams were strong but Young Stars broke the neutral score first and continued to make their chances count and won with a comfortable 3-0 result.

The second match commenced between a very strong team called Mighty Blues and the Canzibe Hospital local team called Super Eagles. The match was very tight with both sides making chances and their fair share of hard challenges.

Unfortunately for Mighty Blues, a goal scoring opportunity by Super Eagles was stopped by a deliberate hand ball and the MB’s went down to 10-men after the referees decision to give a straight red card for the offence. They managed to hang on however and the match finished on the penalty spot after a 0:0 score. Super Eagles sealed the win with a 4:2 victory and went home with the seal of qualification into the last round.

Before the final match, the new awareness drama was performed by the Prevention team and the response from the crowd resulted in a total of 141 people getting tested for HIV/AIDS.

The final match was between United and Lion City. This match showed that even though there is a high quality and performance from the soccer teams this is not always reflected in the result. These teams also finished the match on the penalty spot and after some intense moments, tight goals and acrobatic saves, United won with a 4:2 result.

Ward 25, Group L, Ntibane, 08May10

The last Group Stage tournament was at a venue that was unable to host the TransCape team in the previous year. A new road was build recently and allowed the TransCape team to get to the venue easily and hold the tournament, which has long been waiting...

Teams were late but a bit of time management allowed plenty of time for matches. There were some excellent teams with a lot of potential and each team gave a great performance.

The awareness drama was once again a great success and got such a response that a total number of 166 people were tested. This shows the efficiency of the team to test and the kind of response that comes from a drama of this kind. The stigma surrounding getting tested and finding out your status has continued to drop. The secret is delivering a serious message with a bit of humour.

Penalty shootouts took place between three teams after a tie from all three in the first round of the day. Eventually, the final commenced between Tigers coach by Sibongile and Dion Aces coached by Sithembele. Tigers took the match with a convincing 2:0 victory and will be playing Ngoyini coached by Ben at Mdumbi at the end of the month in the Semi-Final Knockouts. We look forward to these two strong teams competing for qualification into the International Final on the first weekend in August.

The end of the matches came but the day was certainly not over. A large group of community leaders took it in turns to share messages of hope and encouragement to their village, thanking TransCape for holding this event and sharing their excitement for the development of soccer and other sports in the future.

Ward 25, Group K, Mphimbo, 01May10

The TransCape team travelled far to this venue but after a long journey the view from the field was incredible and worth it! The pitch had approximately 15 very large boulders in different areas of the field but didn’t stop the teams from turning up fully prepared for the days tournament.

A situation arose with one of the teams not being welcome by the others but after some encouragement to forgive what has happened in the past the team was allowed to play and the matches begun.

The matches were facilitated well by one of the Prevention Team members and some difficult decisions were made efficiently and the teams were happy.

The drama was performed midday and encouraged over 100 people to test for HIV in the tents at the side of the field. After the drama, all the young people began dancing and celebrating, which lifted to excitement of the day!

A convincing 3:0 victory sent Mazion coached by Siyavuya into the final with Nzonyane FC coached by Zamuxolo. Mazion managed to score two excellent goals and walk away with a soccer ball, R200 and qualification into the Semi-Final Knockouts at Mdumbi Backpackers on Sunday 23rd May. We look forward to see them in a few weeks time!

Ward 25, Group J, Llwandile, 24Apr10

The venue is usually host to the Lwandile Football Assossiation matches but was changed for our tournament. 5 of the 15 teams were selected to compete for first prize.

The days group stage matches were tough and all scores were close. One team managed to confirm their place in the final, while two others had a penalty shootout to decide who would join them.

The drama got a good response and two people from the crowd gave a few words on how the drama was important to them they mentioned things like the importance of knowing about HIV/AIDS and also to be faithful to your partner in a relationship. These comments were powerful and reached the hearts of many.

A traditional dance was performed by some local girls and more dancing lifted the spirit of the day. Everyone was enjoying the music and laughter!

The final was between two of the best teams in the local league, Shining Stars and City Killers. Before the final began, a suggestion from one of the coaches encouraged the two teams to stand together and sing the national anthem and shake hands before the match. This was really something special and an idea for out tournaments in the future.

After a tight 0-0, the teams went to a penalty shootout ending in Shining Stars coached by Ncedo, winning in sudden death. We look forward to seeing Shining Stars in the Semi-Final Knockouts at Mdumbi Backpackers on 22 May.

A total of 120 people were tested and approximately 400 people attended. This was a tournament to remember!

Ward 26, Group I, Mankosi, 10Apr10

The 9th Group Stage tournament was held at the venue which is also hosting the Semi-Final Knockout in May and International Final in August. This area of Mankosi has had a long history of soccer development and is home to 8 fully established teams. These teams regularly compete each weekend at different venues in the Mankosi area and know each other very well.

This is the first time there has been so many teams in one village and meant that the day’s structure had to be changed accordingly. This tournament was to begin and end in knockout matches where each team only have one chance to qualify.

The matches started in the Quarter-final rounds where teams were dropping like flies, some through clear defeat and others through extremely tight penalty shootout where it still looked like anyone’s game.

The two resident teams, Mdumbi Raiders and Young Chicco’s played with passion and had trained hard in the week previous. Unfortunately, Young Chicco’s were out in their first match with the Goalkeeper from Seven Stars saving 3 of their penalties and sealing the win. Mdumbi Raiders managed to get into the Semi-final round but were also defeated by the Seven Stars squad and denied chance of the Final.

Testing for HIV and the counselling was quickly underway in the tents on the side of the field. Each person who tests gets to find out their status and referred to a local support group if they are positive. These support groups are developed by TransCape to make information and resources easily available for those who need it.

A total of 100 people got tested despite the obstacle of heavy wind battering the tents from all sides, braking one and shaking up the others! There was also a great response for the girls during the awareness drama but unfortunately the same can’t be said for the men. The area has had many HIV/AIDS awareness days in the past and possibly over time the interest to engage has dropped.

An issue of the counsellors being from the same village as those getting tested was raised, so it was addressed after the awareness drama and we made sure that the only counsellors from Canzibe would be present in the tents.

The final match was between Ngoyini coached by Ben and Seven Stars coached by Mfezeko. The Seven Stars have recently split from Ngoyini to form a new squad and are clearly making a similar impact which Ngoyini have created. Ngoyini were also scheduled to participate in the next round of the ‘Mayor’s Cup’ but couldn’t miss the opportunity to enter the chance of playing against international teams. Both teams gave a each other a tough match by Ngoyini came out on top by beating Seven Stars 2-1 and sealing their place in the Semi-Final Knockout in May.

The day was long and hot but certainly one to remember! We look forward to visiting this venue again in a few months time.
Poseted by Steve Bollon

Ward 26, Group H, Ntsimbini, 27Mar10

The night before was heavy rainfall, which left the road to the venue extremely wet, muddy and slippery. This was no problem for our local driver, who happily bumped and slid his way down the winding tracks, confused as to why the Englishman in front of him was stopping at every sight of a puddle! We got there safely and setup the tents and sound system.

There were two extra teams who arrived and were ready to play but due to suspicions of them already playing in TransCape’s previous tournaments and not registering before the tournament day, they were unfortunately denied the opportunity. A total of 4 teams took part in the toss.

During our second game, we were approached by the team from, ‘Mayor’s Cup’ who is funded by the government, informing us that their tournament was on the same field and scheduled for the same day. After discussions with the mama in-charge, we decided to make our tournament shorter to allow time for them to start theirs.

After two games were done and no goals scored, all the teams took part in penalty shootouts to determine the two teams making their way to the final. The teams in the final were Nigeria FC coached by Mzukisi and Mevana coached by Mluleki. The game was tight but the time was too short for the teams to sneak in any goals, so back to the penalty spot it was to make clear our winning team for the day and qualifiers for the Semi-Final Knockout in May.

The winning team was Mevana coached by Mluleki. They clearly showed a quality in their skill and teamwork and with a full Arsenal kit they naturally held the presence of professionals!

Once the final had finished, the prizes were given to the Man of the Match and the two coaches who guided their team to the final. These prizes included: R200, soccer balls, shin-pads and a pump.

The ‘Mayor’s Cup’ matches began and so did our drama. The prevention team did a great performance and got an amazing response from the crowd. Many of the support group members gave motivational speeches to encourage testing so that each person might know their status and get the support they need.

The remainder of the day was a huge celebration with loud music and dancing! There was a dance-off where two local talents would show off their moves. This included old and young, small and tall, men and women and even dancers with crutches (one of them with only one leg!) Let’s hope we continue the celebrations in a few weeks time for our Group I tournament.

Finally, we reached a new record by testing 122 on the day. Praise the Lord for that!
Posted by Steve Bollon

Ward 26, Group G, Umbhabha, 20Mar10

The morning was full of obstacles with the relocation of a team member, a dropped cell phone and diesel refills but the team were still on time to the venue. With a stunning sun shining down on the pitch the hearts and minds of our team were also brightened, making us even more excited for the day ahead!

The soccer teams arrived early and with one no-show, we entered two stand-by teams to make it 5 competing for first place. The briefing of the coaches took place and the first game was underway before 10 o’clock.

One of the TransCape Prevention Team members is now going through basic referee training, with performance assessments and written exams to equip himself further. This means we can provide a referee for each tournament and this was his first tournament under the pressure! He did an excellent job and is looking forward to improving in the tournaments to come.

Due to improved time management, 4 games were completed by midday and the awareness drama was done with maximum attendance from the village. A total of 93 people got tested and a lot of happy faces were made from the gift packs given for their bravery!

This day was also a special day for dancing! A group of young girls were dancing throughout the day and bringing such an amazing vibe to the event. An older man also showed his skill in front of the crowd and gave a great performance, which everyone enjoyed.

The final was between Zamazama coached by Sibusiso and Inzinyoka coached by Ndodomzi. The game was almost finished with a 1:0 lead to Inzinyoka but Zamazama managed to equalise in the last minute and bring the game to a nail-biting penalty shootout.

Inzinyoka won with 5 complete penalties winning the R200 prize money and soccer ball. This will help them for their training for the Semi-Final Knockout in May where they will be competing against the other 11 qualified teams from the Group Stage Tournaments, which have been happening since January this year.

As soon as the final was done, the beautiful rain started to fall and was a great time to pack up and declare ‘finished for the day’. We look forward to Group H next week.
Posted by Steve Bollon

Ward 23, Group F, Thafeni, 06Mar10

Officially halfway through our Group Stages of the ‘Transcape Rural Soccer World Cup 2010’ and this one was certainly one to remember!

The coaches arrived in good time and the briefing took place to decide the fixtures for the day. Each team plays two games and points are awarded depending on if they win, lose or draw. The two teams with the most points play against each other in the final match to fight for 1st place and the prize money. The coaches decided to add money to make the total R400 for the winning teams and R200 for the runners-up. It was all to play for!

After the first two games, the drama was performed by the Transcape HIV/AIDS Prevention Team who also educated the crowd about other health issues such as TB and PTMCT. To finish with a real treat, a traditional dance was performed by some vibrant, colourful and enthusiastic girls from Canzibe, who were sent in a taxi specifically to share their gifts with the village! The crowd loved it and with an overall total of 1000 attendees throughout the day, it was certainly a great experience for these growing leaders! They were bought some t-shirts because they are loved so much.

The tournament drew a lot of excitement and discussions began with the Transcape team about the possibilities of doing soccer tournaments for the children and netball tournaments for the girls. We will see what develops in the time to come...

The games of soccer were special to watch and all the participating teams had their own spice to add to the stirring pot of commitment, desire and passion for the beautiful game! The teams entering the final fought hard and it was an exciting end to the day.

Young Boys, coached by Mabulele, were ready and prepared. Lion City, coached by Wanda, were growling with energy. After a tough battle in the beginning, the help of two goals from a Lion City midfielder sealed their victory and finished the game with a convincing 4-2. The midfielder could not have scored without his teams support but was awarded man of the match and given a pair of shin-guards to reward his crucial efforts.

We congratulate Lion City for winning on the day and confirming their place in the Semi-Final Knockout Tournament, which will be taking place at Mdumbi Soccer Field on the weekend of 22-23May this year. We look forward to seeing them in training!
Posted by Steve Bollon

Ward 23, Group E, Canzibe, 20Feb10

There was a high level of expectancy for this group stage tournament with some very strong teams competing for first place and qualification into the Semi-Final tournament in May.
A dispute over the prize money among the coaches resulted in the 1st place being doubled and there being a R200 prize for the runners-up. This raised the standard of the games and kept the crowd on the edge of their ‘seats’ (a standing bottle for each bum cheek!).
The pitch was horrific with rubbish everywhere, a huge rock sticking out the ground in the keeper’s area, electricity poles and box in the corner. Electrical wires were the height of the keeper’s kick and horses and goats were main features during games. To top off the conditions, one of the sides of the pitch was actually a barbed-wire fence with over hanging trees, so no throw-ins were taken on that side – the health and safety officers in Europe would have a heart-attack!
After the first few games, the team did there well rehearsed drama and an extremely special traditional dance was performed by the next generation of world changers, much to the enjoyment of the crowd! Testing was cut short due to a lack of testing packs but still 66 people found out their status on the day and all got counselling and support from the team.
There was a drunken old man chasing people and disturbing some of the supporters but somehow managed to slip away every time the guard at the hospital was called. Luckily he caused no major problems at the field and we can only hope there will be some people rise up out of a slumber and help some of these people who can’t seem to help themselves...
The final match was between Eleven Attackers coached by Men and Super Eagles Coached by Sogwera. The game was very tight with chances created by both teams. Extra time however, was still not enough time for either team to score and ended with Super Eagles winning on penalties. We look forward to seeing them in May.
While leaving the venue after a long day, Olwethu from the prevention team had a small accident by getting his leg trapped between the bakkie and the trailer. He was in a lot of pain and had to make a trip to the hospital. The trailer seemed to be in a much worse condition and after some prayer from the team, we left being sure of his quick recovery in preparation for Group F of the ‘Transcape Rural Soccer World Cup 2010’ in a few weeks time!
Posted by Steve Bollon

Ward 23, Group D, Nomagolo Village, Welese School, 13Feb10

The previous night was lightning and storms and even on the morning of the event there was a consistent and light rain. Before we left the base, one of the wheels of the bakkie was identified as punctured, so the spare wheel had to be changed. These things however, had no affect on the team getting to the field in good time and preparing for the day ahead!
No doubt the best venue we had been to, to date and some very committed players on time and waiting in the rain for their team. These were the kind of things that stamped a seal of encouragement on the team and made a lasting impact.
The equipment was set up in good time and after a slight delay due to a ‘missing whistle’ the games commenced with an impressive show of 4 young, strong, local teams.
Everyone on the team worked hard at their different responsibilities and the results clearly showed. As there were also less games, the prevention team were a lot more relaxed and plenty of awareness and interaction with the village took place. All the testing packs were used and many smiles were made!
The drama and other speeches after the first few games drew an expectant crowd. Everyone surrounded the stage in a huge circle, snuggling together with colourful umbrellas for cover, with gift bags in the hands of those who got tested. A few young people also bravely stepped up to share of their experience getting tested and what it meant for them. These personal stories definately rested on the ears of those who listened.
A local boy called Phumelelo, took over the microphone early on and commentated excellently all day, earning himself a day’s wage as a reward for his commitment. His team, Young Stars, also won the tournament so a good day for him!
The winning team were coached by Botomane and were clearly the best team on the day by far. They managed to squeeze in 5 goals in 3 short games, which got the crowd excited and with some powerful deliveries from the midfield and precise heading from the strikers, they proved to be a strong team with a lot of potential. We wish them all the best in their training for the Semi-final tournament in May.
Posted by Steve Bollon

Ward 22, Group C, Mthokwane Village, 06Feb10

We arrived at the school field with high hopes for the day. The generator for the sound system had a broken part but by using a bit of creativity, Hyman was able to fix it using part from under the bonnet of one of the bakkie’s, boer maak n plan! The extension lead was also left back at the base but with some local saviours stepping in, we were slightly behind time but the system made complete once again.
Most of the soccer teams were early, fresh and ready, while others decided not to show at the last minute. A quick change around of matches and the teams began the first game of the day.
A visit from a Danish Embassy donor representative, Josefine Kuehnel Larson, put slight pressure on the team, hoping that the impression left would be permanent and positive! This however, can never effect the daily situations which arise in rural areas such as this: a full team of riders on horse-back passing the field was one of the more delightful experiences!
A scorching sun and humid air added to the heat of the day’s events and a late team entry was just the excitement that was needed to make it an even more intense competition. Despite discussions about teams entering from previous tournaments under a different name, the best local team won after fighting through penalty shootout after another!
At midday, the HIV drama was delivered well and due to a great team effort, the prevention team reached a maximum number of 89 people being tested since the first tournament in January. This was something to rejoice about and boosts our faith and confidence for future events.
Although the day was a very long one and games had to be cut short due to many different factors, we can learn many things from it and push towards excellence in the events to come. The soccer teams made the matches exciting to watch and the prevention team made the event a great one to be part of.
Finally, we congratulate ‘United’ coached by Mbulelo from Ward 22 for their convincing victory and commitment to the end. We look forward to seeing them in training for the Semi-final tournament in May.
Posted by Steve Bollon

Ward 22, Group B, Lujizweni Village, 30Jan10

A very good field but not such a good location ended up holding a nice balance: even though the field was slightly far from the village the good quality games were worth coming to watch.
Thinking that three teams had already arrived, we called the coaches over for their pre-tournament briefing. Suprised we were to find that the three teams turned out to be an incredibly large SINGLE team and was confirmation that the first game was not going to start any time in the hours of the morning.
One of the nurses who were joining us for the first time took the initiative to call the team over and start with some awareness to fill in the time. This was very effective and the team responded well.
By midday, four of the invited teams arrived and two standbys hoping to get a chance to compete. As the other teams didn’t show we entered the six teams and began the games. One team lived up to the famous saying, ‘African time’ by turning up four hours late for their required time and with arms spread wide, appealed saying, ‘why can’t we play?’! I think the answer we gave was quite obvious.
By late afternoon, the attendance was a 650-700 strong and the quality drama encouraged a staggering 85 people to get voluntarily tested that day. There were also many young, fired-up commentators taking it in turns to get the crowd excited and dancing the day through. This developed into a side show of talented dancers showing their moves and getting some prizes as a result!
There were some very skilful teams on the day and all had a good chance of getting through to the final. Many of the games ended without goals and two of the teams had to draw it out in penalties, ‘Manzimahle’ managing to come out on top, being coached by Thembinkosi.
The final was a tough battle and a controversial goal from ‘Mighty Blues’ coached by Zukisa, with speculation of an off-side gave them a 1:0 lead and won them the game. The goal however, was taken well and the goal-scorer won himself a pair of shin-pads and man of the match. His team received R200, a soccer ball and walked away with all heads facing skywards!
Posted by Steve Bollon

Ward 22, Group A, Nqanda/a Village, 23Jan10

The first tournament of the Transcape Rural Soccer World Cup 2010, was an exciting start to what we hope to be a life-changing story for the population of this part of the Ngqeleni District!
Luzuko Bango, the Prevention Team Co-ordinator for Transcape, began by using a loud-speaker and putting posters up around the village to promote the soccer tournament. A huge response was made with 6 local teams turning up in full colours, around 700 attendees throughout the day and performing acts arriving fully prepared, just to put the icing on the cake!
The venue was a perfect picture: on the brow of a hill, stunning view, a two-tyre track running through the middle of the pitch and two poles tied together for the cross-bar!
The games were exciting with some hopeful teams competing for 1st place, which would send them to the Semi-final Tournament being held in May, giving the top teams a chance to enter the International Final at Mdumbi Soccer Field in August.
After a few games was the awareness drama. This consisted of a scene of a couple who have HIV. They go through various real-life scenes ending up in the wife dying pre-maturely because of refusing to get tested and get help. The drama sent a powerful message and had a lot of humour mixed in it to draw some smiles and reduce the stigma around getting tested. After some entertaining traditional dances by the local kids the games commenced...
Three of the games before the final ended up being played out in penalties and was intense! As the games were based on points and not knockout, the two teams who were fighting to play ‘7 Stars’ in the final, ending up having the same amount of points. ‘Hilanders’ just managed to go through on a +2 goal difference, beating the +1 goal difference from ‘V.Stars’.
‘Hilanders’ then went on to win the final with a convincing 2:0 victory. They were coached by Ace and are were the first official team to go through to the Semi-final tournament in May. We congratulated them with a soccer ball and R200 to give them a head start for their next few months of training.
Posted by Steve Bollon

TRSWC10 Introduction 16Jan10

These blogs are for those who are following the work of Transcape and specifically for the soccer event this year.
We have an exciting year ahead and the team of Transcape have put together a big strategy to use soccer as a tool to deliver their existing HIV/AIDS awareness program. This program has recently developed to not only delivering awareness but also testing on site and immediately providing counselling and support, especially for those who test positive to HIV.
The name of the event is the, ‘TransCape Rural Soccer World Cup 2010’. This event covers a period of 9 months and includes a total of 14 soccer tournaments. The Group Stages take place from January to May and will cover 12 villages in the Ngqeleni District. This covers the 4 wards that Transcape are working with.
From these Group Stage tournaments, the winning team from each will qualify for the Semi-final Knockout, which will take place in May at Mdumbi Backpackers Soccer Field. This tournament will cover a two day period where the 12 qualified teams will play one game, determining whether they win and stay in or lose and go home.
From the Semi-final Knockout tournament in May, the 6 winning teams will then enter the International Final, which will take place in August, also on the Mdumbi Backpackers Soccer Field. The 6 teams will be competing with other amateur teams with international origin, who will be travelling to the Transkei specifically for this event – we have an exciting year ahead!
Transcape hope that this event will have a multi-purposed impact on the communities and individuals in this rural area of South Africa and change many lives because of it. This event provides opportunity for such things as job creation, healthy and purposeful living, good use and distribution of human/natural resources, development of sports, effective health care, mobilisation of local business, education and much more.
We give thanks to everyone who has a part to play, not only in this event and in Transcape but with the ongoing work of servant-hood, which is at the heart of the love we are all responsible to share to one another in this area and the world. Hope you enjoy this journey with us!
Posted by Steve Bollon