Vryburg, Northern Cape

A local non-profit organisation, Reitikile Initiative for Sports Excellence (RISE),  has launched a Chess League in collaboration with the office of the Mayor and the Naledi Sport Unit. Taking into account the importance of encouraging inclusive participation, the organisation’s mission is to promote and encourage the game of chess in schools, particularly among girls.

Through targeted programmes and engagement with the School Governing Bodies and school communities, the aim is to break barriers and create equal opportunities for girls to engage and excel in the game of chess.

“The game of chess plays a significant role in shaping and developing our youth by fostering abilities, poise, responsibility, and critical thinking. Through the Chess League, we are confident that learners will benefit immensely and acquire lifelong skills that will positively impact their lives,” said Frank Anthony, Chairperson of RISE.

According to Claire Phutieagae, Community Liaison Officer at Waterloo Solar, which provided 60 chessboards to the 10 primary schools participating in the Chess League, this initiative will have a transformative impact on rural learners.

“The attempts to promote or introduce chess in Vryburg, which is situated in a rural area, have previously not been successful. We firmly believe that increased participation in chess will contribute to improved academic performance among learners and reduce their involvement in negative activities,” said Claire.

With the league having commenced during the second school term, the final play-offs are expected to take place in October 2023. This exciting event will span several months, allowing participants to showcase their chess skills and compete in a friendly and supportive environment.

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