South Africa - In soweto, physical activity enhancing learning and health
Sporting activity is not only essential for physical health but also mental well-being. Dr Claire Nicholson, founder of Move-it, Moving Matters® in South Africa and Dr. Thandi Khanyi, the program’s partner at the Ministry of Education, explain the reasons behind it.
Move-It, Moving Matters® is a fine example of a successful public-private partnership.
Physical education was dropped from the South African school curriculum in 1999. As a result, we have seen over the years the symptoms of a lack of physical activity amongst children and teenagers.
The situation prompted the launch of the Move-it, Moving Matters® program with children aged 8 to 12 years. The programme applies a unique read-do-write methodology and uses physical activities to stimulate multiple intelligence. The impact of this initiative shows significant improvements in school attendance, concentration, comprehension and development in both language and mathematics.
It’s about giving children the chance of a better life, with a long-term vision.
Increased learning abilities
The programme is supported through partnerships with the Ministry of Education and private companies. Total is one of the key supporters and is able to make a difference in schools not only through the educational programme, Move-it, Moving Matters®, but also the Talent Advancing Programme called GASP™, which is aiming at identifying promising athletes. Total is closely involved in the management of these initiatives. In addition to funding a large amount of equipment, Total has adopted a hands-on approach. Moreover, it was Total that suggested starting it in the disadvantaged area of Soweto.
Today, 11,700 children coming from 42 schools of this area are part of the programme. We are hoping to extend Move-it, Moving Matters® to all schools in Soweto and then to other regions in the country and elsewhere in Africa.