to the Martin Dreyer ” Change a Life” Academy
What an achievement! Martin Dreyer’s Change a Life Team certainly exceeded his wildest expectations. In his words “Going into this Dusi, because I wasn’t paddling, I never thought I could be on ‘cloud nine’. I was wrong, I’m still floating – ecstatic with the boy’s performance and extremely proud of their achievements. Two Dusi golds and seven in
the top twenty – someone please pinch me!”
Martin’s best case scenario was to have 10 canoeists finish in the Top 50. What this talented and committed group of youngsters achieved was 11 in the Top 43. Eric Zondi and Lucas Mthalane ended the race in 9th and 10th positions respectively and both took gold.
18 year old Kwanda Mhlophe was the U18 winner in 18th position and Mmeli Cele, although he didn’t feature in the top group and finished in 105th position, was the winner of the Under 16 race. In the under 21 category, the team took 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 8th 9th and 10th places.Michael Mbanjwa hit problems on day 2 and, although he made up six minutes on first place leader during the notorious Burma Road portage on Day 3, finished in second place. Still, a very impressive race.Stan Lorge, Ursula du Plooy, Mnandi Bestbier and Pieter Strydom, who backed the team from the banks of the river, witnessed Change a Life in action.
As Ursula put it “Martin is reaching out through sport to young people who really are at grassroots level, giving meaning and bringinga sense of achievement to their lives. This was such an emotional experience, to meet these shy youngsters and to share their adventure on the Dusi River.”Computershare, through the Mike Thomson Change a Life Trust, will continue to support the Martin Dreyer Academy and make a difference in the quest to change lives.