Cheetah on the loose

This is incredibly exciting news! Chandre Jantjies from Bergmanshoogte Intermediate School in the Free State town of Philippolis is the first pupil from the school to make a Free State team.

Chandre has been selected as a Free State Netballer – or a “Cheetah” – as Free State athletes are affectionately known.

And now Chandre has the opportunity to play in “Nationals” in Margate as well as compete in “SA Trials” (see photos below).

Lulani Vermeulen – Centre Coordinator at Good Work Foundation’s (GWF) Philippolis Digital Learning Centre – works with many of the children in Philippolis and happened to spot the obvious talent in Bergmanshoogte’s under-12 Netball side.

“These girls are determined. They should’ve been at trials a while ago, but they’ve just never had the money to get there” says Lulani.

This year GWF was in a position to sponsor the team. We decided to give these girls the opportunity to show everyone what they’ve got, and boy, are we glad that we did!

At the trials, four of the girls went through to the second round in Bloemfontein. Chandre made it on to the regional Gariep team, and then a few days later was invited to compete at the provincial trials.

“When we arrived” says Lulani, “nobody expected an athlete from the Gariep group to make the team – it’s the kids from Bloemfontein who normally make the cut. So you can imagine how proud we were that Chandre from ‘little old’ Philippolis was selected. She beat the odds. She showed them all what she is made of.”

GWF will be sponsoring Chandre’s journey to Nationals later in the year and we wish our “Cheetah” from Bergmanshoogte all the luck in the world.

It’s truly a blessing when – as an organisation – you can support a child’s dreams. To be able to give all of these talented girls the opportunity to shine is a humbling experience. They’re on the court every day, sometimes without shoes, but they’re up there with the country’s top athletes, opening doors for themselves.

They just needed a step up at the beginning. Go girls and well done to Heiltjie Snyman and Wilmien Vermeulen (coaches) on such a fine job!

Kate Groch
CEO, Good Work Foundation