South Africa’s transplant athletes will descend on Port Elizabeth from Thursday July 12 to Sunday July 15, to compete in the 13th National Transplant Games.
This event is hosted by the South African Transplant Sports Association (SATSA).
SATSA is recognised by the Department of Sport and Recreation and the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee and is a member of the World Transplant Games Federation (WTGF), recognised by the International Olympic Committee.
This is “Celebration of New Life” where athletes who have received organ and bone marrow transplants will compete in multi sports events.
It sets the stage to demonstrate the improved quality of life following transplantation and through that, promote awareness for organ donation and transplantation.
This is also an opportunity to show their gratitude towards living donors and families of deceased donors.
The picturesque setting of Port Elizabeth for this year’s Games is sure to inspire athletes from ages five to 80 years in 13 sporting codes, to perform at their best in order to represent South Africa in the World Transplant Games 2019 in Newcastle, England.
“The National Transplant Games is always the highlight on the transplant calendar”, SATSA chairman Stan Henkeman explained: “It is the point in every transplant athlete’s year where they strive to be at their best, ensuring they gradually improve their own performances, while keeping one eye on their goals to qualify for England.
“Port Elizabeth has always had superb facilities and is one of the most beautiful cities to compete in. We’re sure this will help inspire our athletes to perform at their best. We welcome Nelson Mandela University and in particular the Faculty of Health Sciences who are partnering with SATSA in organising an unforgettable event”.
The National Transplant Games will open on Thursday July 12 with the arrival and registration of athletes followed by SATSA’s annual general meeting.
On Friday July 13, all non-track and field events will take place, namely cycling, road running, golf, swimming, lawn bowls, petanque, squash, table tennis, badminton, tennis, ten pin bowling and darts.
One of the highlights on this day is a fun walk event that will take place on the beachfront from 3.30pm to promote awareness for organ donation and transplantation. The public is welcome to participate in this event.
As always, the athletics on Saturday July 14 remains the draw card, not just for the athletes and supporters but is also open to the public. This will take place at the Madibaz Athletic Track of the Nelson Mandela University.
The public is invited to come and experience the Celebration of Life which all athletes will display at these Games.
The Regional Organising Committee is also very excited to announce the launch of the Organ donor and transplantation Steps Challenge 2018
It is planned that up to 125 teams of four participants will take part in this 90-day event during which the daily number of steps of each participant and the team will be registered. (Starting on Monday April 9 and running until Saturday July 7.)
There will be a prize for the individual with the most steps and also a trophy for the team with the highest number of steps.
The results will be announced at the gala dinner which takes place after the games.
SATSA is hoping that schools in the greater Port Elizabeth and even further afield will also enter a team and will award a trophy for the school with the highest number of steps.
The idea of the Steps Challenge is to promote an active life-style and to get recipients, families and friends to promote organ donation and through that, help to improve the transplantation rate in South Africa.