Champion Profile: GJ Venter

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GJ is a former businessman who traded in his office in Johannesburg for a more hands on position in Bredasdorp, shaping the future of the youth of South Africa.

GJ has a huge passion for sports. Back in his school days GJ was a keen sportsman playing cricket, golf and soccer. GJ explains, however, that  it was rugby that taught him some of his most important life lessons; rugby helped him build the solid foundations that have made him into the man he is today. That man is a loving and supportive husband as well as a new father. GJ and his wife welcomed the birth of their first child in February this year. Congratulations GJ. Family is very important to GJ, and he credits his wife for helping him become a better man as well as encouraging him to share his passion for sports and his life experiences with those around him who are not so fortunate.

After hearing about CoolPlay through Education Connection, GJ found out that being a CoolPlay Champion is more than just being a coach, its being a mentor, friend and father to the children, “CoolPlay sessions not only impact the children that participate in them but also the larger community. The CoolPlay children share the life skills they have with those in their community. Each CoolPlay session you oversee, you get to see the child involved with it grow and develop it is amazing to see the difference you are making on that child’s life.Further, CoolPlay not only impacts the children’s lives but also the lives of the CoolPlay champions.” GJ vindicates this as he says CoolPlay has given him a new perspective on life and highlighted to him what is truly important. “CoolPlay is a fantastic program and it gives children the platform to play the sports they love as well as learn invaluable life lessons”.

CoolPlayer Bradwin and his coach Luqmaan feature on Beautiful News

Bullied and on the sidelines, Bradwin Louis felt alone. His classmates were merciless, making fun of his ears and the birthmark on his face. His self-confidence was shattered. But all that changed when he joined CoolPlay at his school. Through a series of team building activities, Louis absorbed life lessons that have left him brimming with a newfound resilience. Watch the video to find out more.


Jean De Villiers 'caps' CoolPlay's Hong Kong Dream Team


The 3 of February 2018 was a very memorable day for  100 Coolplay girls and boys. The Laureus Sport for Good Foundation together with the Zando Cape Town 10s hosted a proactive and inspiring coaching clinic for Coolplay children at Hamiltons Rugby Club. The Coolplay children spent the morning taking part in a variety of coaching drills and life skill activities with the Zando Cape town 10s legends teams which included the likes of Laureus Ambassadors Jean De Villiers, Corne Kruger, Dan Nicholl and Zanele Mdodana.

The children and coaches of CoolPlay also got the opportunity to demonstrate to the rugby and netball legends some of the activities and life lessons taught through the Coolplay training sessions. The coaching drills were thoroughly enjoyed by both Coolplay children and rugby and netball legends alike.

A special capping ceremony was held for the 12 boys from the CoolPlay program who were selected to take part in the Laureus and Hong Kong 7’s exchange. That takes place from the 3-9 of April and comes after Laureus was named the official charity for the Hong Kong 7’s.

A very exciting few weeks and months lie in store for the boys and we wish them well and hope that they enjoy the experience.


CoolPlay Tournament in Masiphumelele


In late September Coolplay hosted a netball and rugby tournament around Masiphumelele with 170 kids involved from Marine Primary, Kleinberg Primary Netball U/10,11 and 13, and a combined rugby side from Kleinberg and Marine U/11 and 13 vs Ukhanyo Primary.

Organiser, Area Manager and local rugby legend Sandile India commented "It was a great vibe and there was a lot of excitement around the netball courts from the kids with our Champions Grace, Nceba, Fez and Pam working together as a team.

Rugby was at Noordhoek Sports Fields with kind assistance from the teaching staff of Ocean View and Masiphumele Rugby Club. The boys were so excited, especially with the protests and tragedy that has affected that community in recent times, we were thankful to provide them with such a fun and positive  experience."  

"I want to thank the great work from our Champions, it was great to see them sharing CoolPlay conversations and drills throughout the day - from our perspective it's not about winning, it's about having a chance to grow, appreciate diversity and each other, and also to have fun. It was great to see our Champions give very child who was there a chance to play."

"We received a lot of positive feedback from the Kleinberg Primary Sport Administrator, and he wishes that we can do more of these tournaments in future. He highlighted the impact that Coolplay is having towards the kids and how much it is appreciated. I sincerely hope we can host another tournament in the near future"