Senior Fellow Sarah Frazier Reflects on Her Trip to Norway with Lead4Peace

Sarah with Nomfundo, Ayanda, Thetha and Meagan in the snow.

Sarah with Nomfundo, Ayanda, Thetha and Meagan in the snow.

Today’s blog is written by Senior International Fellow, Sarah Frazier, who recently traveled to Norway with four PPI-SA LDP Participants for the Lead4Peace Leadership Camp. She shares about her time in Norway attending the camp.

What a way to start of the year! This past week I traveled to Norway with four PPI-SA participants for the Erasmus+ Lead4Peace Camp. I am no stranger to travel, but I must say, this trip stands out as one of my favorites.This was a highly anticipated trip, for the participants ( Nomfundo, Ayanda, Meagan and Thetha) because they were going to be reunited with friends they met in Cyprus, during phase one of the Erasmus+ LeadPeace Camp last year. A huge thank you to Nesodden IF Basket club and the community who raised money to cover costs that allowed me and the participants to take part!

It was so great to watch the PPI-SA participants reunited with their friends from other PPI sites, as well as seeing them experiencing the snow and activities like dog sledding for the first time. Another highlight was seeing how close the participants became with their host families. This is what made this camp really unique and memorable. Now, the participants can say they have another family in Norway.

The participants also got to give presentations to groups of students about South African culture, history, and what it is like to be a young person growing up in South Africa.  It was a great opportunity for our participants to share information about South Africa, their culture, language, and represent themselves, their communities, KZN, and the Republic of South Africa as a whole.

PPI-SA participants making their presentation about South Africa.

PPI-SA participants making their presentation about South Africa.

To end,on behalf of PPI-SA, the participants and their parents, I really want to thank the Nesodden IF Basket club, parents and community for EVERYTHING! This trip would have not been possible without you all.

THANK YOU. SIYABONGA. BAIE DANKIE.

 

PeacePlayers Jet Off to Norway to build Bridges

This weeks blog includes a insert from The Mercury newspaper written about four PPI-SA participants who traveled to Norway on the 9th of February 2017 and will return on the 16 February 2016. The Mercury newspaper is Durban’s morning newspaper, providing coverage of local, South African and international news and sport. This article was written by Given Majola.

FOUR Durban teenage basketball players will rub shoulders with 60 of their global counterparts as part of the PeacePlayers South Africa basketball programme in Norway, starting today.

(From left to right) Meagan, Thetha, Ayanda & Nomfundo.

Durban teenagers Meegan Montiere, Thetha Nxumalo, Ayanda Dlamini and Nomfundo Ngcobo showed off their basketball talent yesterday before flying to Norway for the Lead For Peace Camp, where they will share their leadership skills with teenagers from around the world.Ayanda Dlamini,14, Meegan Montiere, 15, Nomfundo Ngcobo, 18, and Thetha Nxumalo, 18, flew to Norway last night where they will attend the Lead for Peace Camp that runs until February 16.

Peace Players South Africa Marketing and Fund-raising manager Sbahle Mkhize said the players had made their mark during the programme, which was started 16 years ago to bridge the divide between Durban communities.

“We saw there was a need for our young people from different communities of townships, suburbs and more rural areas to be brought together through sports to learn, have fun and make new friends.

Aspirations

“The most important thing is to give them aspirations that there can be something beyond the communities they come from, where there are drugs, alcohol abuse and violence,” Mkhize said.

“We create safe spaces where the children can grow and become leaders in their communities.”

Mkhize said the programme had developed relationships with schools across the city where they introduce the sport and provide equipment and coaches, and life and leadership skills.

“They are taught discipline, respect, teamwork and communication skills,” she said.

Mkhize said the four players had traveled to Cyprus last year and would now be showcasing their leadership skills in Norway.

Ayanda, who attends Ogwini Comprehensive High School in Umlazi, said she had gained valuable life experience on the programme.

“It has helped me understand others from different backgrounds and their cultures. I look forward to being exposed to the lives of others in Norway,” she said.

Meegan, of Wentworth, who attends Aquadene Secondary School in Richards Bay, said the programme had helped her lead her peers.

“I look forward to finishing school and playing basketball,” Montiere said.

Ngcobo, who attends Mowat Park High School in Montclair, said the programme had exposed her to many new opportunities.

She said: “Going to Norway, I look forward to meeting others I do not know, as opposed to just hearing about them.”

Nxumalo, of Lamontville, said the trip would be a learning experience. “This teaches one to live with those from different backgrounds and come up with solutions to common problems,” he said.

 

PPI-SA Coaches Are Ready For 2017!!

PPI-SA 2017 Coaches

PPI-SA 2017 Coaches after a successful orientation!

This past week, PPI-SA inducted the newly selected 2017 coaches for the programme. The induction took place at Shongweni Spirt of Adventure Camp site as well as in the PPI-SA offices. The week started at the camp site, with all 23 coaches for 2017 as well as PPI-SA staff. An exciting addition to the camp was Joe Smith, PPI Global Organizational Learning Specialist. With the support and funding from Laureus Global, PPI-SA was able to host this week long training with Joe assisting the PPI-SA staff with the training and induction.

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PPI-SA Coaches at Spirit of Adventure.

Programming in schools is set to start on the 13 of February, with this week being used to make introductions of coaches to schools and school representatives.

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From right to left. Ayanda, Nomfundo, Meagan & Thetha.

Another highlight for the month of February is the 4 participants travelling to Norway this week.later this week. Nomfundo Ngcobo (18), Thetha  Nxumalo (18), Meagan Montiere(15) and Ayanda Dlamini(14) were selected to represent PPI-SA at the Erasmus+Lead4Peace (youth leadership development programme) camp in Norway from the 10th of February – 16th of February 2016.

The teenagers are no strangers to travel since they already visited the Eastern Mediterranean Island of Cyprus where they represented PPI-SA last year.  The Cyprus camp resulted in the young leaders being invited by Nesodden IF Basket, a subsidiary of Nesodden Idrettsforening, to attend the follow up LEAD4PEACE camp, all expenses paid. We want to extend a HUGE thank you to the Nesodden IF Basket players and their family members, for making this opportunity a reality for our participants.

 

Coach Thobani Takes on New role at PPI-SA !

PPI-SA's Thobani (left) with PPI-CY International Fellow Ryan

PPI-SA’s Thobani (left) with PPI-CY International Fellow Ryan

This weeks blog is written by Thobani Khumalo, the newly appointed Local Fellow at PeacePlayers International – South Africa.

  1. How long have you been a part of the PPI Family?

I have been with the programme since 2005, pretty much about 12 years. I started as a LDP participant and back then Its was known as Playing for Peace. What made me stay was the culture of PPI, the concept of the family on and off the court. I have been with the organization in so many levels, from participant, to PSP coach, to LDP, to being an AC then a Life Skills assistant coordinator and being an LDP programme coordinator, and now ofcause, as the Local Fellow.

2. What are you most excited about your new role?

Its has always been progressing, from one role to another. I always have been anxious to grow and learn as much as I can. This new role is probably the most exciting of them all, its being piloted here in PPI-SA, I’m mostly excited that I will be helping develop coaches, I’ll be involved and hands on with the programme in multiple levels. Also I’m excited to find new ways to grown within the PPI family and help reach our mission. This role will give me the skills that I will use personally when pressuring my own career goals in the IT field. Skills like treating and seeing people as people(Arbinger) for example.

3. What do you hope to achieve in the position in the next 2 years?

Honestly to grow as much as I can, and to learn from the my fellow colleagues and coaches. I like challenges and after two years I would like to see growth in some of the coaches, share my knowledge with them as much as I can, and also inspire others to strive to improve in multiple areas as be proud ambassadors of the PPI Family. I want to lead by example and help create more community leaders that the youth can aspire to be like.

Thobani reffing at the 27th City Wide Tournament.

Thobani reffing at the 27th City Wide Tournament.

 

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

Today’s blog comes from the team at PPI-SA, who is kicking off their year in an exciting way!

Second round of the interviews this Monday.

Second round of the interviews this Monday.

Happy New Year to all our From-the-Field readers! 2017 is proving to be a great year as PPI-SA is one step away from selecting the young leaders who will be coaches for 2017. Just this past Monday, PPI-SA hosted the second round of interviews for all the applicants. And, in true PPI style, the proceedings started on the basketball court.  There were over 25 applicants present with a few returning coaches. The interview process has been happening since December 2016, all thanks to  the PPI-SA HR Manager, Mtu Zulu and the rest of the PPI-SA staff members for really working together tirelessly to ensure that by the time programing commences in schools on the 14th of February , there is a dream team ready to coach!

Moreover, when the 2017 coaches are selected they will be participating in 5 day long orientation camp funded by Laureus.  This will give new coaches the opportunity to get inducted into the PPI family as well as get to know the programme a little more.

PPI-SA would also love to announce the appointment of, the newly created position of the Local Fellow, to Thobani “African Panda” Khumalo. Thobani will be working closely with the Strategy & Operations to manage and coordinate all programs. PPI-SA is so excited to have Thobani on a full time basis and look forward to see his growth and success in the year ahead.

PPI-SA's Thobani (left) with PPI-CY International Fellow Ryan

PPI-SA’s Thobani (left) with PPI-CY International Fellow Sean.

PPI-SA is looking forward to the year ahead, and kicking off programming in 2017.

A HUGE Thank You from PPI-SA

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As we are fast approaching the end of 2016, PeacePlayers International – South Africa (PPI-SA) wants to take a step back and reflect on the year we have had as an organization for this week’s blog. It has been 281 days of hard work and dedication from PPI-SA coaches and staff. 281 days, over 450 children and 70 games later, we can say we had a successful year of programming. We have compiled a list of events/highlights that stood out for us and that have made 2016 a memorable year.

  1. Participating in the PeacePlayers International Cyprus – Lead4PeaceCamp: This year, PPI-SA sent four participants, one from the PSP programme and three from our LDP programme to Cyprus for the camp. It was so heartwarming to see the reaction on the participants and their parents’ faces when we told them their child had been selected. From the visa applications to the day the returned from Cyprus, parents and schools were so helpful and excited.
  1. PeacePlayers International – SA Evaluation Week: For the first time in 15 years of operating, PPI-SA had its very first evaluation of effectiveness and relevance of its programme. The evaluation needed all staff from all departments to work together to gather the data needed. From handing our surveys to facilitating focus groups, everyone pulled their weight. With the results, PPI-SA can now say there is qualitative and quantitative evidence that proves why our programme is relevant and needed in our communities.
  1. Participating at the Pietermaritzburg Girls High Vaal Fowler Invitational Girls Tournament: PPI-SA LDP Allstar Girls’ team travelled to Pietermaritzburg (45 minutes south of Durban) to participate in the girls invitational basketball tournament. This year was the first time PPI-SA was able to afford to travel and participate in the weekend long tournament. The amount of exposure and experience our girls got from this tournament was huge, as they got to compete against the best teams in the province and country.

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None of the above would have happened if it was not for our partners, our donors – Laureus SA Foundation, Goldman Sachs Gives, Cultural Care Kids First Foundation, the U.S. Consulate General Durban, SAPREF, Nelson Mandela Childrens Foundation, Jotun South Africa, Cooee Soft Drinks, and Futurelife. We thank you all for your continued support and investment in our programme. Your commitment has made a great impact in lives of participants!

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Thank you to our schools, school representatives, principals and participants. We can not wait for 2017, to see the smiles on your faces and to help you make our communities in Durban –peaceful and safe.

THANK YOU. SIYABONGA.  BAIE DANKIE. ENKOSI KAKHULU.

PPI-SA ends program year with 27th City Wide Tournament

PPI-SA participants warming up at the 27th City Wide Tournament.

PPI-SA participants warming up at the 27th City Wide Tournament.

With the end of 2016 fast approaching, preparations for 2017 are in full swing at PeacePlayers International SA. After ending the programme year on a great note with a successful 27th City Wide Tournament, the bar is set high. This year, the Cultural Care Kids First Foundation came on board as the major funder for the 27th City Wide Tournament along with other valued funding from the Laureus SA Foundation, Jotun South Africa, Cooee Soft Drinks and FutureLife.

Participants having fun during a life skills activity at the City Wide.

Participants having fun during a life skills activity at the City Wide.

For the first time, PPI-SA was able to provide all 450 participants a PPI-SA branded t-shirt through the support from funders, which was the highlight of the day for the teams. The day ended with the Cwebezela Primary School girls and boys team coached by TT as the 2016 Champions in the PSP programme. On the LDP side, Umlazi finest, team TT Janda, took the LDP Championship for 2016.

Cwebezela Primary School Champions of the PSP Programme.

Cwebezela Primary School Champions of the PSP Programme.

With the programme closed for 2016, the PPI-SA staff is still hard at work looking for vibrant young people to coach and work as area coordinators in the 2017 programme. If you are passionate about developing and empowering young people, check out the position posts below.

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