THE HONOURABLE ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR YOUTH AND SPORTS
• Members of sporting bodies
• Ladies and Gentlemen
Bula vinaka, Namaste, Salaam aleikum and a very good morning to you all!
It is my pleasure to be here this morning opening the sports outreach program as I am essentially coming home to sport.
Ladies and Gentlemen, one thing almost every young child looks forward to is playing and having fun. Kids love nothing more than to go outside, run around with friends and, very often, to get dirty.
If children are already active at a young age, why not encourage them to continue by enrolling them in organized youth sport programs?
Young people will gain many positive experiences by participating in organized physical activities, but none as important and influential as developing social, physical and mental skills during their time in activities and sport.
As a result, you, as young participants, can continue to build upon and cultivate these skills which will ultimately be transferred into your development as successful adults.
A prosperous restaurant needs greeters, servers, cooks, and so forth, as well as the managers. Their ability to work as a team is crucial to its success. Each has a different but important role and one can develop in one and move on to another.
You may not have the same interests or beliefs of those you work with, but that cannot stand in the way of carrying out your job.
The same principles and strategies are relevant and important in sports, and they can be nurtured through involvement in organized youth sports activities.
Many youth are already part of community organized sports programs. There are many different types of activities such as volleyball, touch rugby, futsal, badminton, basketball and so forth organized in the afternoon.
We should be mindful that our communities can be more proactive and use youth sport as an outlet to encourage social activity, a healthy lifestyle, and skill development for that particular sport. This is in addition to keeping them constructively occupied and not straying on to the wrong side of the law.
Ethical decision-making skills are also important in our everyday lives because we are constantly making decisions on something. This can be what you will do on a day-to-day basis or dealing with a situation that must be resolved.
Essential for everyone is having the ability to make the best decision possible for any situation by gaining ethical decision skills and putting them to use.
When a person is involved with sports, they are constantly learning and practicing ethical decision-making skills because there are always decisions that must be made.
Whether the situation is between two teammates or dealing with calls in game situations, there are always decisions being made. Being a participant in sports, an individual obtains personal and social values and behaviours.
We do need to remember though that while we may say “I had no other option”, in fact we do. The issue is whether we are brave enough to make that difficult decision or whether we go for the easier one.
This will inevitably indicate our tolerance for unethical behaviour and what kind of role model we will be for others, particularly our children.
Participants, I therefore urge you to make the most of this workshop. You have been provided an avenue to be part of a very good initiative.
The train the trainer program will allow you an opportunity to accredit yourselves in the areas of:
• Establishing community sports clubs
• Sports specific coaching, refereeing or umpiring skills
• Sports administration skills
• Effective presentation and assessing skills and
• Basic strength and conditioning
I leave you all with an interesting fact to consider:
“China did not win an Olympic medal until 1984. At the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, the Chinese won 100 medals.”
That is the power of true commitment and dedication and therefore I sincerely wish you all the best during the workshop and hope that you all expand your horizons.
With those words I declare the workshop open.
Vinaka, Dhanyabad, Shokran and thank you all!