Taking sports for the blind to a different level

Sedzani Netshikweta, founder of a non-profitable (NP) for the blinds, Nech Sports for the blind exposure

“Everything happens for a reason and my purpose is to be the voice of the voiceless.” Said Sedzani Netshikweta, founder of a non-profitable (NP) for the blinds called Nech Sports for the blind exposure.

The 25 year old, second year public management student at Tshwane University Soshanguve campus said the reason he started this organisation was because there was no jobs for the disabled.

Blind people cannot be doctors, quantity survey, security officer, driver and many more occupations and that just encouraged him to preserve to have a profession.

Like others, Netshikweta was not born vision impaired, it was only at the age of eight that he lost his sight. In 2009 he moved from partially blind to being complete blind.

He said he maintained being partially sighted for that long because he was under medication. However, he decided in 2009 to stop the medication because he believed in the saying that: “What is done is done and for a purpose,” and his purpose was to be the voice of the voiceless.

Nech SBE started in 2015, its sole purpose is to ensure that sports for the blind is taken into consideration in particular from amateur level to professional level and ensure that disabled people are making a living through sports.

“Growing up I was participating in several sporting codes for the blind including cricket and gold ball’’, said Mr Netshikweta.

His passion has won him several accolades like being Sportsman of the year 2016 at TUT Prestige awards and the runner up for the same category in 2024. In 2011 he obtained position three for goalball at the South African Game Tournament and a gold medal for cricket for the blind tournament under the Northern Gauteng in both 2012 and 2014.

“I realised that people with disability has an ability and potential for sports but the problem is that their sports is rated at armature level” he said.

Nech SBE has managed to introduce sporting codes such as cricket and goalball for the blind across different universities such as the University of Limpopo, University of Venda and TUT.

The goalball ladies team obtained 3nd place in 2024 national goalball tournament and recently the boys took part in the same tournament and took third place.

In the long run Mr Netshikweta hope to builds a sports centre which will accommodate disabled athletes coming from different provinces. His biggest wish is to see managements from different institutions introducing different sporting codes for the blind, so that when they start advocating for sponsors, the blind are already exposed to sports.

Although he is unhappy with the financing of the organisation he hopes to introduce disability awareness programmes, Tennis for the blind, judo, athletics and programmes aimed at fighting inequality and inferiority to people with disability.

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Ivanilde Melembe