Mashonaland East Province will host the Zimbabwe National Youth and Paralympic Games in 2019 according to the rotational system that was set up by the Government of Zimbabwe some few years ago. As part of the preparations to host the annual mega sporting event, the Provincial Sport and Recreation Development Committee and the Local Organizing Committee for the Games held a 2 day induction workshop which was facilitated by the Sports and Recreation Commission at Nyadire Teachers College in Mutoko and was supported by Plan International.

The induction workshop which was meant to capacitate the office bearers of the Provincial Sport and Recreation Development Committee (PROSDC) and to also enlighten the members of the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) on their roles and responsibilities was attended by 40 officials drawn from various arms of Government and the Sport and Recreation Sector. Some of the topics that were covered included; Supervisory Composition and Roles, the establishment of the Provincial Sport and Recreation Development Committee and its functions, Concept of the National Games and their significance, Games Local Organizing Committee and its Terms of Reference, Hosting plans and Critical Milestones of the LOC.

“The induction workshop was largely a success though the time that was allocated was short in our view, but all the same we found the topics to be extremely useful and very enlightening across all the Committees that will run the Games.

“As Mashonaland East we are geared to ensure that the Games are a resounding success. We may not have all the ingredients as of now but we are quite sure that by the time the Games will be hosted all the ducks will be in a row. Our thinking is that we have to spread the Games because Marondera which is the Provincial Capital does not have all the required facilities to host these mega Games and it also augurs well for the development of sport in the province but as to the specifics we will sit down and discuss the exact modalities preferably before the end of the year”, said Tellmore Chibanda SRC Provincial Sport Coordinator for Mashonaland East.

The National Youth and Paralympic Games were incepted in 2003 and 2008 respectively with the aim of creating greater access to sport to the young people below the age of 20 and the disabled and they have also been used as Talent Identification platforms. Generally they have been a success story with many athletes having passed through them to higher levels of sport development and competition. Some of the athletes who are the alumin of the Games include Vitalis Chikoko who is now playing professional basketball in Italy, Ngoni Makusha who is the only Zimbabwean athlete to have won a bronze medal at the World Championships in South Korea in 2011 among others.

Let us all rally behind Mashonaland East Province so that these Games are a resounding success.

By Tirivashe Nheweyembwa