18 July 2017 – South African Football Association (SAFA) staff took time off their work schedules to commemorate Nelson Mandela Day at the Tag Recovery Home, a drug rehabilitation centre based in Eldorado Park, Johannesburg.
Led by the respective Regional Presidents of SAFA Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni, Mr Anthony Reeves and Louis Tshakoane the staff spent time cleaning the centre and also donated 2010 FIFA World Cup legacy books and soccer balls to the youngsters of Eldorado Park.
Also present was former Bafana Bafana captain, Aaron “Mbazo” as well as Helman Mkhalele who both shared how football has the power to change lives and play a significant part in the fight against substance abuse.
“I come from a township that was well known for substance abuse but I was gifted with the talent of playing football and I was able to escape what many young people had to deal with. Football changed my life and it can do the same for anyone else who is willing to work hard and not fall into the trap of substance abuse” said Mokoena.
“Mbazo’s” sentiments were echoed by Mkhalele, who also urged the youngstars to remain focused and not fall into the trap of substance abuse.
“As a former player, I have seen so much talent going to waste because of drug abuse and that is why I always make it a point that whenever I am with young people, I emphasise the importance of pairing your talent with discipline. Talent without discipline has resulted in a number of players wasting their opportunities and I urge you not to fall into the same situation” said Mkhalele.
The day concluded with the youngstars enjoying a good game of football with the two legends as well as the SAFA staff members.
See how SABC News covered the event here: