Handball is one of the most played team sports in the world and an exciting, fast-moving, high-speed game. But in South Africa Handball is almost unknown. To change this is the task of Klaus Feldmann, a handball expert from Germany, who is since 15th April on the road promoting handball in the Western Cape. The short-term sports development project abroad from the German Olympic Sports Confederation is implemented in partnership with the South African Handball Federation (SAHF) and the Western Province Handball Association (WPHA).
South Africa is not the first country that Klaus is visiting to educate about handball. But for the experienced IHF- and EHF-lecture it is every time a new challenge: “I teach handball to teachers, volunteers of NGOs, coaches from other sporting codes, or even inmates of prisons. Most of the participants haven’t heard about handball before they attended my workshops”, is Klaus explaining his varies experiences. The first workshops had been hold in Mitchell’s Plain, Ocean View, Franschhoek, Malmesbury and Grabouw. “The interest has been really good. I am traveling to different areas through the whole Western Cape. I experience a warm welcome from my hosts, everywhere were I go. It is special to get to know the country and the people like this”, gives Klaus positive feedback. Over 80 participants and over 50 kids and youth could already benefit from the project. Ruth Noluthando Saunders (President of SAHF) is also sharing the enthusiasm for it: „It is a good project. We hope that it is continuing like this. The kids are so enthusiastic; they want more of this game”.
Co-ordinated and supported is the project from Nicola Scholl. The former player of the German Handball National League initiated with her organization “PLAY HANDBALL ZA” the contact between the German Olympic Sports Confederation, the German Handball Federation and the SAHF. “We create a lot of excitement with the road-show. Now it is our duty to keep the vibe up and the development within the communities sustainable with follow-up activities”, is Nicola explaining her interest in a long-term development program. PLAY HANDBALL ZA is a sports and development organization and is looking for students who like to volunteer for 3 to 6 month as handball coaches.
The program is financed by means of German Federal Foreign Office and in South Africa supported by SolarWorld Africa, the market leader for solar energy in South Africa, as well as the Cape Peninsula University of Technology.
Klaus Feldmann will remain until end of May in South Africa. The next locations are Swellendam, Bredasdorp, George and Dysselsdorp. As a representative of the German Olympic Sports Confederation it is in his interest to find a sustainable solution for handball development in South Africa. After his return to Germany the program will be evaluated and a long-term project will be considered.
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