Noluthandoi Makalima - Picture Supplied
Noluthandoi Makalima - Picture Supplied

Cerebral palsy Para Surfing contestant in need of funds

By Sibulele Kasa Time of article published Nov 21, 2021

Share this article:

Never in her wildest dreams did Noluthando Makalima think she would one day become a surfer, let alone represent her country.

Para-surfing athlete Noluthando Makalima, 32, who was born with cerebral palsy loves nothing better than the exhilaration and freedom of riding the waves.

Never in her wildest dreams did Makalima of Khayelitsha think she would one day become a surfer, let alone compete in adaptive surfing competitions and represent her country.

Makalima is preparing for her next competition the 2021 Pismo Beach ISA World Para Surfing Championship in California in the US from December 7 to 11.

But the athlete needs to raise R45 000 if she hopes to fulfil her dream.

Makalima who recently won a silver medal was selected as part of a South African team of 27 athletes.

“I didn't know it was possible for me to surf, then I had a lesson in 2014 with an organization called Siyaphakama Development for the Disabled Association, ” she writes on her Backabuddy page.

She went on to surf with the Roxy Davis Foundation and now Ant Smythe is her coach and mentor.

She said: “In my first lesson I was very scared but went back. Now I have done lots of competitions, and last year I went to California in the World Para Surf Championships and came 2nd in my category, and won silver for my country.

“I have also won a trophy for the Ministerial Recognition of Excellence awards. This year I want to win gold, so I can prove to people who are disabled and those who are not, that just because you are disabled doesn't mean you have to just sit at home and not have dreams.”

Makalima is trying to raise funds for her trip to the US because she is a single mom who lives on a grant. " I always make it to training, even if it is dangerous sometimes with the taxis.“

She wanted to show others that i was possible to realise your dreams no matter what the hurdles.

ISA World Para- Surfing Championship, recognised by International Paralympic Committee, is held for the best para surfers to display their talents in a paralympic-style, world Championship competition.

Surfing South Africa general manager Robin de Kock, said they received a grant from the government which helped to host local competitions in the country.

“We are a small NGO Surfing South Africa, we don’t have any funds. The people who want to compete in the international events have to raise their own funding. We don’t get funding from government. We don’t get funding from the department of sport and we don’t have the funds,” he said.

The Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport said they had received an application for funding support from the Western Province Surfing Association for their para-surfing athletes.

"We are currently in the process of obtaining approvals for the application and will be in contact with the association as soon as we have finalised the process," said a departmental spokesperson, Tania Colyn.

Share this article: