I changed my influence to POSITIVE


My name is Tshimologo Ralethe but everybody calls me Tshimo. I am 12 years old and live in township called Mamelodi. We rent a back room where I live with my mother and baby brother. My parents got divorced when I was born and then my father passed away when I was 9 years old.

I joined Altus Sport because I thought we would be playing football league matches but there is a lot more sports and life skills that I never knew existed. Playing makes me happy, especially basketball. When I grow up I want to be a famous basketball player like Lebron James. He is also my role model because he treats people with respect, he always looks out for his community by building schools and community centres. I sometimes wish he was here so that he could build us more community sportsgrounds my us kids in Mamelodi because the streets are not safe. I love sport because that is how me and my dad got to spend time together, now that he is gone, those are my best and happiest memories.

I have learnt so much from my coach and the programme. Coach Lwazi said that “Tshimo, you are very influential with your friends, but you are very ugly to them and talk to them with disrespect. They only listen to you because they are scared of you.” I was so upset and sad when I heard that but after learning about respect and good leadership qualities, I realized I was wrong. I am a team player now and its okay to fail or struggle because that makes us resilient.

His mother Nqobile said “that I can see a difference in my eldest son, especially in his behaviour and attitude and the increasing number of good friends.”

His teacher, Mrs Molefe quoted: “As teachers we would love for our kids to excel in sports but we do not have the time that is required to do that, and it is good when we get outside help from NGO’S to give our kids at local communities the chance to feel like the other kids at Schools that are capable, we like that it gives kids opportunities but Due to lack of resources we cannot provide. Altus Sport is exactly what our communities need because it provides a safe space for learners to express themselves, be safe and a chance to be kids in a society that pressures them to think otherwise.”

My favourite part was when we got to play different types of sports this was fun because we tried new things and we enjoyed all of them, mini cricket was the best of them. I think we should be able to attend everyday and not only once a week, but the sessions are also fun, and they have to be Monday to Friday.

Youth leaders – Lwazi Mabona on why he chose this participant:

I chose him because when I started the program with them this year it was his first time participating and he had the tendency to act superior to other kids and they would want to treat him as such, but through months of Altus sports life skills & sports skills he started to change and he earned the respect of his fellow participants and today he is the one who defends the smaller one’s when the older kids refuse to have them in their team when we divide into teams to play games. I would like to help him continue to evolve and grow into his potential. He is a born leader and I want him to realize that and maybe someday he can bring positive change to his family and larger community.

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