The SASA-II (South African Sports Association for the Intellectually Impaired) in partnership with Lulamisa Community Development Organisation announced today that the Eastern Cape Sport Association for the Intellectually Impaired (ECSA-II) will host the National SA Summer Age Group Games.
SASA-II is a member of SASCOC (South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee) and Inas (International Sports Federation for people with Intellectual Disability). SASA-II adheres to an international definition of intellectual disability that is recognised by the United Nations World Health Organisation.
Around 750 athletes with an Intellectual Impairment from all 9 Provinces will travel to the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan to take part in the annual Summer Games. These athletes will compete in 6 sport codes: swimming, cricket, hocker, table tennis, blackball pool and indoor rowing. Some of our athletes with Down syndrome will compete in the codes of swimming and table tennis in preparation for the upcoming Trisome World Championship. This is the first National event in South Africa to be sanctioned by Inas.
Nelson Mandela Bay, with its rich sporting history, has numerous sport venues to be utilised for the Summer Games. Our event will take place at Gelvandale Cricket Club, Malabar Community Centre, Lilian Ngoyi Sport Centre, Happydale Special School, Kwamagxaki Cricket Club, Dan Qe Qe stadion and Westbourne oval, to name but a few.
Lizzie Vogel, National President of the association says: “This is a very special year for us, as we have a brand new partnership with Lulamisa. More athletes will get the opportunity to compete as it is development year in all sporting codes. During a development year we focus on giving multiple athletes, in additional age groups, the opportunity to take part on National level.”
A number of national teams will be announced during the Summer Games for international participation later in 2016. At the end of March, the Cross Country team will go to the USA to compete in the World Cross Country Championship in New York. In July swimmers, athletes, futsal players, tennis players and table tennis players with Down syndrome will participate in the first Trisome Games in Italy. Europe will be host to a few more of our teams, as there is also an Athletics event in Turkey, Blackball Pool in Ireland and the World Half Marathon in Portugal on our schedule for 2016.
Mr. Kenneth Kubayi, National Sports Convenor and member of the National Executive Committee of SASA-II visited the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro this past month. He was impressed by the high standard of venues acquired by National Cricket Convenor, Mr. Ernest Fiki. “Our athletes deserve nothing less”, he said.
Mr. Kubayi, from Gauteng, was accompanied by Mr. Hlatswayo and Mr. Mmekwa to inspect venues for their respective sporting codes – Indoor Rowing and Blackball Pool.
Port Elizabeth is known for their hospitality and recently hosted the SANDF Career Expo and Armed Forces Day celebrations, which proved to be an exceptional event. We can’t wait to see our athletes compete in your friendly city.
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