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A Game for Life

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Go Project Films A Game for Life I don't know how I can really put this, but my football is really something that is very powerful in my life, that gives me the drive to be who I am now, and have the goals I have now. I think if it wasn't for football… I can't really imagine myself without football. Certain things, certain principles in my life are based on my football. I don't know if you understand what I mean. [♪ native music ♪] [children playing] [♪ native music ♪] This is my place. Its a very small place. Its just a four room house. This is where we sit as a family, watch TV, eat supper, and chat. Just family chats. I'll show you the kitchen where we cook our dinner. This is my kitchen. Its not a very big place but it is where I live. This is my bedroom; I share it with my aunt, but unfortunately now she is asleep because she was working night shift. This is my bed. I sleep here with my kitten. Oh yes, this is my kitten. It is my friend. I sleep with her almost every night. This is my aunt. She stays here. She is selling veggies and fruit and her business is definitely going very well. In one week you find that you come and buy something and then its not there, its finished. So she's got a business that is doing well. This road that we are walking on, this is where I started playing soccer when I got to Port Elizabeth. We put small stones, there would be goals on each side of the road, then we'd be playing with the guys. That was before there was grass here. There was no grass here, so we would play from that wall to this side of the road. I grew up playing here and when I see this road or when I walk here I always remember where I started playing soccer. [♪ native music ♪] Most of the time I was with my other two cousin-brothers, and they would spend most of their time playing soccer and that's how I got on to the field and played as well. [♪ native music ♪] When I was growing up I was very, very poor. When I was still in primary school, I would wash with cold water.

My school shoes, the sole was broken, so when it was raining, my socks would be so wet. And in terms of food, there was absolutely nothing to eat. [♪ native music ♪] For me to be able to eat at school I would have to wait until we are writing a test. Then each pupil would put on 10 cents or 20 cents. Then the whole amount would go to the person who was the highest on a test, and that is how I would manage to eat, because, if we were writing a test and put on some money, it was definitely my money because I was a very good student. [♪ native music ♪] I know their are many people out there who are going through what I went through. I know they won't deal with it the way I dealt with it, because I was taking everyday as it was coming. [♪ native music ♪] I never thought of going out and being a prostitute or something, and I know other people who are going through that thing. Always, not always, but sometimes opt for that if they are girls, and if they are boys, they go to armed robbery, bad things like that. So the main reason I always tell the story is just to let them know that poverty cannot conquer you for the rest of your life. You can conquer poverty as well. [♪ native music ♪] [dog barking] [♪ native music ♪] There is a way that you can go. There is a solution to poverty. They always do things that are unethical because they say they are going through poverty. [♪ native music ♪] I've never done anything to anyone when I was very poor, but here I am today. I'm not as poor as I was before and for me, now, I don't feel like I'm poor, even though I don't have everything I want. I don't have a big house, I don't have a car, but I still feel that I am rich because I am rich inside. [speaking in native language] [laughter] This is a very good friend of mine. I grew up playing with him on the street. He was never a very good player, but a very good goal keeper. [laughter] Come try it: [gaming device sounds] [winning tune] [quarters hitting the metal return] I've won. It's my lucky day. There you go, that's all the money. [♪ native hip-hop music ♪] Soccer helped me to stay away from the option of being a prostitute. I have always had love for my football and discipline. If you are going to be doing all the wrong things to try and get something to eat, or money, then those things won't be in-line with your football. If you look at soccer, the things you do that are in line with football, they are also in line with your own life. [♪ native hip-hop music ♪] People love soccer, and the young kids out there, they are interested in soccer. If you talk about soccer, they all know what you're talking about, because everyone knows about soccer. So its easy to reach out to the people with soccer. [♪ native hip-hop music ♪] Grassroots Soccer we have the kids who know how to prevent themselves from getting HIV and also to teach them life skills. [♪ native hip-hop music ♪] The older guys have gone through things in their lives, but would like to teach the kids so that they could not go through those things. The way we would do is with interactive games. So we don't really say, "Yeah, we're going to talk about HIV now." Some people might just lose interest in it, but simply because its interactive, we do the actual activities where they just learn from them. And its not as if we are telling them what to do, like to abstain. [♪ native hip-hop music ♪] So why was it not easy to find the ball? Because you couldn't see the ball. So remember when we play that game, what did you say? Teacher>Yes my girl, say it. Student>Someone who has the ball is going to be HIV positive. So what does that tell you about HIV? You can't see someone who has HIV. [clapping] Since we work with kids we use the power of soccer, and we use soccer balls because kids love to play. If you just make them play, especially with our street leagues, the way we do the teaching for HIV and AIDS gives them time to play soccer. [♪ native hip-hop music ♪] Those are tools for them to be better people, to stay away from things that could destroy their lives. [♪ native hip-hop music ♪] After we've done the program, we also assess the change in their attitudes. [♪ native hip-hop music ♪] [clapping] If there's a big difference where their attitudes were before they went through the program, I would be very happy about that. [♪ native music ♪] When you've got something in your heart and you also want someone else to have that same feeling, I don't know how to say it... but it's always important to just share things with other people. It's just important. If you know you can do something to help the next person, just do it with all your heart. And not expect to get a reward. It really makes more sense to be able to have others help because, really, we cannot live in isolation. Honestly, we could be a unity here, but what about the others that are not a unity? We are going to say, yes we are a unity, that is fine for us. They are not a unity, that's their own problem. It shouldn't be like that. [♪ native music ♪] If people could unite. I'm telling you, I don't see anything stopping the world from being a better place. I don't see anything stopping it. [♪ native music ♪] It doesn't take much for soccer to get people together. If there's a soccer match somewhere, as long as they know that match is somewhere, they will definitely go. It's really easy for it to unite people. [♪ native music ♪] For me its really about passion because I love soccer. I love soccer. It just really... Even if I can be stressed out about something, at my training session or at my game, I forget about it. I don't know what to say about soccer, but that's the thing about it. I just don't know what it is. [♪ native music ♪] Nolusindiso "Titie" Plaatjie is 22 years old and lives in Port Elizabeth South Africa. She studied Human Movement Science at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University and dreams of becoming an engineer. Titie is a well-known soccer star, and in 2001, she was named captain of the provincial team. She has been playing soccer since the age of five. Currently working for Grassroots Soccer as the Port Elizabeth Project Coordinator, Titie is a key facilitator in raising HIV?AIDS awareness among youth and people of her community. She believes that this is a fight for the world.

Video Details

Duration: 17 minutes and 20 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Views: 4,343
Posted by: global on Aug 11, 2008

A game for life

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