A number of South Africa’s top triathletes took time out to support an incredible project in KwaZulu Natal during the recent Richards Bay BG Triathlon World Cup. The initiative not only benefits young children but also the environment.
In KwaZulu Natal, the Wildlands Trust has initiated an indigenous tree growing project designed to generate income for this impoverished community. The seedling trees are then sold by the Wildlands Trust to companies that rehabilitate land disturbed through mining and other activities. The young “Tree-preneurs” earn a money value for each tree they grow up to a height of 30 cm and can then exchange this for needed goods. Once they have grown 150 trees they earn a bicycle and a helmet of their own and are encouraged to participate in MultiSport events.
All but six of the 464 competitors at the duathlon event held during the weekend of Richards Bay had already grown their 150 trees and were presented with brand new bikes and helmets. They lined up at the Esikhawini Community Challenge for a tremendous event and a wonderful sport development initiative. The kids were able to meet some of the best athletes in their country who came out to show their support including reigning African triathlon champions Mari Rabie and Hendrik DeVilliers.