The disabled came out to play

Epilepsy South Africa hosted the first wellness and disability games in Khayelitsha last Thursday.

Various role players from the area attended the games which were opened by officials from the Western Cape Department of Health and the City of Cape Town.

The games included five-a-side soccer, netball, wheelchair basketball, and board games.

After the games the participants were awarded with medals.

Aviwe Ndyokolo, from Epilepsy South Africa, said the event was organised by the Khayelitsha Disability Forum.

“Last year, we saw the need for support groups because a lot of people with disabilities have problems ... With no help,” he said.

Ndyokolo said they decided to host the games so they can show people that those with disabilities can also participate in sport.

“There is this notion that people out there think only able-bodied persons can play sports. We are trying to change that mindset,” said Ndyokolo.

He added that they are hoping to have programs such as this throughout the year.

Bongiwe Qukumbana (32), said the games have boosted their morale because they are amongst other people with disabilities and they are playing sports.

“Such events help us a lot we are not only playing but we get to share the challenges we face on a daily basis in our communities and homes,” she said.

Qukumbana said it would be nice if the games would happen all the time because they forget their problems and just have fun.

Andile Ndabeni (43) said he is happy that people with disability came out because a lot of them lock themselves in their homes and do not want to be seen.

“If you were to go into many homes around here, you will find a lot of disabled people in hiding and that is because of the lack of support and fear of their communities,” said Ndabeni.

He said he hopes more people will join them in future and that way they will get help and be active so they can stay fit.

Fundiswa Baba (40) said she is happy to be part of the games and she would like for them to continue so they can show people out there they are not stupid.