Meet the players and find out why they love netball-- check out the video by clicking on the "Photos and Videos" tab!
$10 buys one bag of cement!
Exciting updates! We have chosen a contracter who is already hard at work digging the boarders of the court, we enlisted some of the learners today to haul sand to the field to mix in with the cement (no pre-mix bags here!) today, and afterschool, I went with two of the guys to purchace the first round of cement. It will be arriving at the school tomorrow morning!
The contractor is charging N$2000 (about USD$200) which is a very reasonable rate. However, our original estimates for the amount of cement we would need were too low. We will need over 100 bags of cement for this project, and each bag costs about USD$10. Although I am keeping my fingers crossed for a discount on the cement, I want to be sure we can cover it without one, so I've raised my goal amount by $300 to make sure everything is covered. If there is extra money leftover, it will be used to purchase additional equiptment for the team.
I would like to extend a HUGE thank you to all of you that have donated already! You have been amazing in the past 10 days. Please continue to help by spreading the page around on facebook, email, twitter, anything! Remember to tell potential donors that even $10 buys one bag of cement-- we can reach this goal one bag at a time!
Think back to your fondest memories of high school, and chances are at least some of them involve sports. The same can be said of most Namibian learners. When these kids aren't sitting in class or in study, many of them are out in the sand training in soccer, netball, or track and field.
Throughout my time in the Namibian village of Onamutai, I have gotten the change to join my girls as they practice netball, a cross between basketball and ultimate frisbee. The girls are so passionate and enthusiastic about the sport that they love, but unfortunately they are seriously lacking in equpitment. They play barefoot in sand that is filled with rocks, broken glass, and 3 inch long thorns. The poles with the net-less baskets are held up by rocks and are prone to falling over in the middle of practice. They have one ball that is wearing very thin and loosing air.
I don't think I need to tell you all the ways that these girls benifit from playing sports. From learning teamwork and perserverence, to builidng confidence, releasing energy, and opening doors to the future, playing netball is one of the best things I could choose for my girls to do afterschool. A proper court will not only allow them to improve their skills, host and participate in tournaments, but also to simply play safely-- away from menicing thorns and poles that are ready to topple on someone.
My school is working very hard to build a proper court for the girls. We have selected an area next to our soccer field, and have begun digging the holes for the poles. The bricks are ready to be laid out and all we need now is cement for the poles and the court itself.
Onamutai is lucky in that it is fairly well resourced compared to neighboring schools thanks to the generosity of the Millennium Challenge Corporation, however those funds are for academic resources only. The athletic equipment, like most schools in the region, is old, broken, or non-existant. By building a netball court and purchacing some new equiptment, we can greatly improve the health and happines of the learners at Onamutai-- both the current ones, and for years to come. Please help me to raise about $1000 to cover the cost of the cement, the nets for the baskets and maybe a few new balls. The girls and I (not to mention their coaches!) would be very, very thankful.