The mass participation programmes(MPP) were introduced and initiated in increasing the level of participation in all spheres and transforming sports and recreation. No country can expect to achieve and sustain success at the elite level without a strong participation base in the community. The National sport and recreation plan (NSRP) outlined on building an active nation and expect to achieve and sustain success at the elite level through a strong participation base in communities where every champion has their beginning, maximizing access to sport and recreation, building multi-coded sport facilities and have active physical education in every school in south Africa. Sport and Recreation (SRSA) need to sit down and revisit these things and make sure they push provincial government responsible for sport and recreation and bodies involved to act effectively with regard to pushing the grassroots personnel especially sports councils that are responsible to engage with municipalities to make sure mass participation programmes are active.
Confederation of school sport association of southern Africa (COSSASA) need to come on board to ensure that school sport engage on issue on extra-mural activities in all schools. The problem might be that inexperienced sport administrators who do not understand the channels of sports have been placed in hubs and these is not doing any good for the country. When we talk about sports we are not referring to only football, we need active participation and transform sport and expose our talented athletes to playing golf, cricket, tennis, volleyball, athletics and others and most of rural areas do not have facilities to play those kinds of sports.
The facilities that have been build in some areas are also becoming white elephants because there is no continuum in programmes that have been established after 2010 fifa world cup like fan parks. We call for a close working relationship between department of education, SRSA, SASCOC, provincial governments, provincial councils,NGO’s and municipalities to ensure that there is implementation and continuity in MPP. Minister of Sport Mr Fikile Mbalula has recently launched a volunteer program called national sports volunteer, calling to all sports legends, former players, athletes, sport administrators and coaches to contribute to elite sports and hopefully that will contribute in overcoming these challenges.
South African confederation of sport council and Olympic committee (SASCOC) looks after all various national federation who are affiliates to it, together with the various provincial sports council and responsible for making sure delivery is sustain. The issue of building sport and recreation is still being neglected as most of our rural athletes still play on a gravel and bumpy pitch that are not save and these has a serious consequences for the building of better South Africa, especially for the development of young people
The NSRP discussed that it will deliver and appoint a national coordinator for talent identification who works within integrated national systems and ensure the provincial and regional application systems. MPP should start with a well implemented icons of building accessible facilities,clubs,sports house, information centre, education and training, recruiting volunteers and active sports councils invested on or communities. So now the question is, is it provincial departments responsible for sport and recreation not providing seed and incubation funding for the provincial sports councils since these structures support a pathway for sport and recreation development from grassroots level or should we blame Sport and Recreation South Africa and say they fail dismally to integrate the development of sport and recreation at provincial and local levels through sports councils or is it the grassroots personnel dissolving funds and lack experience??
MOLELE PHEEHA PERCIVAL
Sport and Recreation Coordinator.