Meet Koketso Shiang, a young netball coach from the village, whose only dream is to make the dream of others come true. Koketso is a 32 year-old, who happens to love and carry with him the passion for netball. He is what one would describe as the youth on the move, who is just a few steps away from reaching the end goal.
They say it takes a village to raise a child, but in that very same village, there’s always that one young, motivated and courageous individual who will always see life beyond the vision of every village child.
Born and raised in an underdeveloped place with high level of unemployment, teenage pregnancy and drug addiction rural area called Seabe in Mpumalanga, just outside Hammanskraal, Koketso blindsided himself with the dreams he had for the girls in his area.
In 2018 Koketso founded the Blue Crane netball team, with the hopes of reducing the teenage pregnancy statistic reading of the area, to keep them busy and off the streets. The Blue Crane name has a significant value to them, it describes how they play (they play beautifully, jump high and aim to play for the national team) and defines their ultimate goal.
As much as how beautiful all that seem, the Blue Crane netball team has and still is facing challenges that are setbacks for them. The major setback they are currently battling with is transport money to attend games and afford other utilities they need. They collectively each contribute R5 every Friday, although it is still a problem for others who come from homes without financial stability. “Together we can achieve more” those are the words driving the Blue Crane netball team. When he started the team four years ago, a community member donated two sets of balls and nets, they also won prize money from a competition they took part in and used the finance to buy the equipment to assist them with training.
They have participated in a number of competitions winning some and losing some, one of them being the Hammaskraal community games and have this year managed to come third place at the recent Raloka Netball League. It has been a financial strain on him as he assists his players from his own pocket, carrying the weight on his shoulders is hard as he’s unemployed.
Koketso has strong believe that once they get financial assistance or any sponsorship, the team would do and reach their dream. He expressed on how he had written down a donation letter, but players could not manage to raise funds as the community was skeptical of the letter since it did not contain a stamp of a logo to represent the professionalism of their team and work.
Koketso added on to say netball is not going anywhere, the sport will still be alive in a few years to come, he regards it as one of the biggest female sports in the country and all over the world. He has the other gender playing for his team, proving that netball is not just for females but males do play the sport. He wishes to see his team play with big leagues in Hammanskraal and Pretoria.
His motivation for other community sports in similar situations as his is, “dedication, passion the love for sports, commitment and the hunger to learn more is what keeps us all moving.” Koketso is looking for sponsorship to help equip the Blue Cranes with; takkies, tracksuits, backpacks and traveling fare for attending games. He is asking for donations from organizations, foundations or any other company or individuals, so they can afford training equipment and a proper facility from the municipality. Any financial assistance or any form of donations will be much appreciated.
Contacts: 072 600 3474,
Facebook: Koketso wa ga Shiang
For Donations: Mr DK Shiang,
ACC NO: 1343279249