Where We Work - AFRICA

Sport Matters delivered its first partnership in South Africa in 2011 with Dutch NGO, RESPO International. The basketball workshops were part of a comprehensive SPAT (Sport and Physical Activity Trainer) program spanning two years that also featured; tennis, circus skills, sign language, and recreational games and play.




Location: Elandsdoorn (Limpopo Province)

Project: Train-the Trainer Basketball Program

Target population: 21 participants, a combination of Ndlovu sports coaches and people with physical and intellectual disabilities, living in and around Elandsdoorn.   

Project Partners: RESPO International, Ndlovu and Sport Matters


Sbusiso helping a school student prepare for her first wheelchair basketball experience 

Sbusiso (also known as Blessing) helping a school student prepare for her first wheelchair basketball experience, the only student with a disability in her class.



  • Participants delivered an inclusive basketball session to local school students with practical basketball activities and a discussion on attitudes towards disability, human rights and inclusion.
  • The NCG Sports Ground and gym in Elandsdoorn are accessed by people with and without disabilities participating and getting active together.
  • Participants now conduct regular sport sessions at Centres for the Disabled in Thembelisha, Tambo Square and Masizahke, Sibisi Special School for the Disabled and Epilepsy SA.






Donald, Elandsdoorn.


"Today with the children we have taught them how to interact with disabled people so they have to understand and realise that we ALL have equal rights. It doesn't mean to be disabled means unable. There is a lot of those who do. Those normal people think they are right and that people can't do. We have surprised them with a lot of fantastic games and showed them the tactics of basketball!"







Location:  Mitchell's Plain (Western Cape Province)

Project: Train-the-Trainer Basketball Program

Target population: 18 participants predominantly with physical disabilities (many with spinal cord injuries as a result of shooting and stabbing incidents), and able-bodied people without a sporting background. Participants came from Mitchell's Plain, Khayelitsha, Ravensmead and Delft. 

Project Partners: RESPO International, Cape Town City Council, Western Cape Rehabilitation Centre (WCRC), Greater Bulls Wheelchair Basketball Club and Sport Matters.



Paul refereeing his first game of wheelchair basketball 

Paul refereeing his first game of wheelchair basketball after learning the basics with Sport Matters.  




  • Participants led an inclusive coaching session for 11 inpatients from the Western Cape Rehabilitation Centre with spinal cord injuries.
  • After the workshop, participants now conduct regular sport sessions to people with and without disabilities together in local schools, health clinics and public spaces within Mitchell's Plain, Khayelitsha, Ravensmead and Delft.
  • Two new teams entered the 3rd Annual Cape Town Wheelchair Basketball Tournament from Ravensmead and Delft in 2011.
  • A new community organisation 'Mandla Sport 4 Change' was inspired and formed by the SPAT graduates in Cape Town in 2012. (Mandla is a Xhosa and Zulu word meaning 'power')   
  • New employment opportunities were created by Cape Town City Council for a number of SPAT graduates. They now provide disability-inclusive sport and recreation programs in Recreational Hubs for six Local Government Areas in Cape Town.  



Check out more images from South Africa in our Media Gallery


If your organisation is interested in developing a partnership with Sport Matters in Africa, please contact the team at info@sportmatters.org.au.