Writer Terri Guillemets once said, "Chase down your passion like it’s the last bus of the night," and South African school teacher Misokuhle Mbanjwa, is doing just that.
At the age of 60, which is definitely considered 'night' by some elderly people, Misokuhle is steadily carrying on with her passion for rugby by coaching a kids' team in Inanda, a suburb of Sandton, Johannesburg.
According to IOL, Mbanjwa watched rugby for the first time in 1995 during the Rugby World Cup which South Africa hosted. She was impressed by the beauty of the game and the sheer talent of players like Jonah Lomu. Inspired to go into action, she started taking coaching classes with the KwaZulu-Natal Rugby Union in 1999.
Today, not only have some of the kids she coached gone on to do great things in amateur rugby, she now has up to 200 children from under-9 to under-13 age groups who train five days a week under her.
In 2013, her team was the South African Under-9 champions in Tag Rugby. While this achievement gives her joy, she’s proud that she has given the kids a better future.
When she first started coaching, she faced the challenge of getting the kids to develop an interest in rugby. With that challenge overcome, she still has hurdles to jump in her work – like the lack of sports field, language barrier, and transportation.
The grandmother’s good work in the township hasn’t gone unnoticed though. Her work has been recognized by South Africa’s Tag Rugby Association, and we hope she gets more recognitions because, honestly, she deserves it.