African Bush Camps Foundation holds a soccer tournament each year over the Zimbabwean holiday National Heroes Day for the Dete Soccer League, a ZIFA (Zimbabwe Football Association) registered soccer league made up of 16 clubs representing 16 villages of the surrounding areas. The aim of the event is to provide the clubs with a tournament and prizes, as well as bringing together the community in a positive context, building community spirit. It is also meant to benefit some of the remote villages who usually do not receive any attention. The 2012 Heroes Day Soccer Tournament proved to be even more successful and well attended than expected.

The 2012 Heroes Day Soccer Tournament started with the four Primary School’s participating in the event, opening competitions of the day with Volleyball matches. Mambanje, Lupote, Dopota and Main Camp Primary School’s all traveled to the Dete NRZ stadium for the day.  As the Zimbabwean education system has mandated all school’s to include Volleyball in its sports program, the African Bush Camps Foundation is supporting these four school’s in developing the facilities and skills for them to play volleyball at a level where they can compete with the district and country.

After playing their matches, the four school’s received materials to build their own school volleyball courts, uniforms, balls and when school’s re-open for third term the teachers of the 18 school’s in the Dete area will receive training to be able to coach their school’s effectively in Volleyball.

The Primary School’s ran a tuck shop to fundraise for their sports activities next term while two of our High School Scholarship Students, Emmanuel Rabeka and Terrence Sibanda ran the sausage sizzle which was a great success.

The preliminary rounds of the soccer tournament were held in the weeks leading up to the 4 day long weekend with the semi finals being held on the Saturday between Maganyana and the Shumba Stars with the Shumba Stars winning 2 – 1 and the other semi-finalists, Iwisa Sparrows beating the Makwandara Black Rhinos 5-0 at the Cross Dete grounds. In the finals, the Iwisa Sparrows beat the Shumba Stars with a very convincing 3 – 0 to walk away with the 2012 Heroes Trophy.

Prizes included soccer balls and socks for each of teams, complementing the soccer boots awarded last year as well as fuel vouchers which are much treasured as the soccer clubs are far from each other and traveling for practice and matches are some of the greatest challenges some of the clubs face.

As we target Development of the whole of the Dete region as a community through the events that the African Bush Camps Foundation, we also invited the netball teams to participate in matches and they also received new netballs as prizes. The major sponsor for this year’s soccer tournament was once again the Jane Bubear Sports Foundation from the UK. Without their incredibly generous support we could not reach as many people in the community and contribute to the development in sports in schools.

To get involved in the African Bush Camps Foundation or to make a donation towards one of their projects, kindly contact sophia@africanbushcampsfoundation.org.