NMMU George volunteers lend a helping hand at wheelchair challenge

NMMU George volunteers lend a helping hand at wheelchair challenge

NMMU George staff and students proudly supported the annual Outeniqua Wheelchair Challenge held in George recently, as well as the wheelchair games held the previous day.

On the big day, the Madibaz arrived at the break of dawn, assisting in the registration of athletes and handing over of participation packs, allocation of parking to the buses that arrived by the dozens, assisting in off-loading of disabled athletes, assembling of wheelchairs (with varying degrees of success), and rendering various services to athletes – ranging from pumping of flat tyres; helping athletes to switch between ordinary and racing wheelchairs, helping those who arrived without wheelchairs to be accommodated; directing athletes to cross the road when it was safe to do so; helping those who arrived at the last minute to get ready for participating in the race; pushing disabled athletes in the fun event; accompanying the odd injured athlete to the first-aid tent – and much more. Generally just lending a helping hand where and when it was needed.

The enthusiasm with which everyone dedicated themselves to simply making a difference was truly inspiring and contagious. As one NMMU George volunteer emphatically stated – “Next year we will be back, armed with many more bicycle pumps to inflate all those flat tyres!”.

Twenty-four NMMU staff and students assisted at the actual Outeniqua Wheelchair Challenge, held on 19 February, while the Student Leadership, Sport Office, sport bursary holders and other student volunteers (eighteen in total) assisted with the wheelchair games held at the Garden Route Mall the previous day.

Final verdict: It was great fun – thank you Madibaz – you did NMMU proud!

Garden Route Mall: Wheelchair Games, 18 February 2011

NMMU George students, Pinky Mbuthuma (Student Council member), Yentel Swartz, Kwanele Mavimbela (House Committee members) and Amy Geweld assisted with the wheelchair games held at the Garden Route Mall recently. This event was aimed at introducing school learners to the world of disabled persons.

NMMU George students (back, from left) Pinky Mbuthuma (Student Council member), Kwanele Mavimbela (House Committee members), Yentel Swartz, Hugo Loubser (NMMU George Sport Manager), Monwabisi Bahlekazi ((House Committee member), Amy Geweld, Brendon Louw; and (front from left) Armond Nel, Maneni Thanduxolo, member of the Student Council and Sidima Mtila, Chairperson of the NMMU George Student Council. They were part of a group of 16 NMMU students who assisted with the wheelchair games recently held at Garden Route Mall in George. 

NMMU George House Committee members, Kwanele Mavimbela, handing food parcels to the learners who participated in the fun wheelchair event at Garden Route Mall. 

NMMU George student leader, Sidima Mtila, also tested his skills at handling a wheelchair. He was closely observed by fellow students and timekeepers in the wheelchair event, Brendon Louw, learners, and Drikus Bester. 

Denise de Beer (centre), organiser of the wheelchair games is flanked by NMMU students (from left) Regardt Smit, Etienne Janse van Rensburg, Hendrik Langenhoven and Timothy Pretorius.

NMMU Staff and students helping out at the Outeniqua Wheelchair Challenge, 19 February 2011 

NMMU staff and lecturers, Adele Potgieter, Martie Meintjes and Danie Crous (back), Hugo Loubser with daughter Hanna and Zweli Qwabe (front, right), together with students from the George Campus volunteered their services at the recent Outeniqua Wheelchair Challenge held in George. Forestry student, Subusiso Mtshali, wearing a hat; Drikus Bester, Timothy Pretorius, Sikhumbuzo Nxumalo, Regardt Smit; and (seated behind the table) Etienne Janse van Rensburg and Divan van Zyl were also amongst the many NMMU volunteers.

NMMU George lecturers, Abrie de Swardt, and Danie Crous, also showed their mettle by rendering various services at the 2011 OCC.

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