On March 19, I woke up very early with excitement at the fact that I was going to the Youth Leadership Programme (YLP) in Germany on invitation from the United Nations Office of Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP). My luggage was already packed and everything I needed was in place. I was anxious to get going and meet all the friends I had made on Facebook. I went to the Health Academy to say goodbye to my colleagues and later got a ride to the airport from Ben-one of our volunteers.
My first flight was to the OR Tambo airport in Johannesburg. Here, I met up with Stacey Naris-one of the participants I met on Facebook. Stacey is a professional Namibian football player who also works for Go Girl. We boarded our flight to Zurich together. I enjoyed this flight the most because this was going to be my first time abroad.
After this 10 HOUR flight, we had to run all over the airport in order to make it to our boarding gate on time. Luckily, we made it five minutes early. We boarded our one-hour flight to Berlin, landed, collected our luggage and met up with Ben Taylor and Jamie LaFlamme who are two of the organisers of the camp. They were holding up "YLP" signs and welcomed us with both arms open. That is when I knew that I was not lost and that this could be my second home. Then I met eight other participants who came from Kenya, Nigeria and parts of Asia.
We went to Kienbaum sport centre- where we spent most of our time at the camp. I met Anna and Jairos. They were interns with UNOSDP in organising the camp. They showed us our rooms and later that day I met more participants and two facilitators from the Right to Play organisation. After that we started learning about leadership in sports and started sharing our leadership stories.
During the camp we had an excursion throughout Berlin and we learnt about the history of East and West Germany. I saw the German parliament, statues, tours and then we went to a burger restaurant where we had our lunch.
Several participants and I visited the Streetfootballworld offices since we belonged to their partner organisations. I enjoyed being in the office, got to learn a lot more about them and played some table tennis while I was there.
I also went to a high-level dinner, met representatives from Ministries of Sport from around the world, ambassadors and Mr. Willi Lemke- The United Nations Secretary Generals Special advisor on sport for development and peace. The food was delicious, the entertainment was great and the conversation was flowing for the rest of the night.
The learning and fun never stopped throughout the camp. On the last day, I was surprised to learn how the other participants thought of me through an exercise we had to do- we each had to write a comment about each person on a piece of paper. That night we danced partied, laughed at our comedians and slept late.
On departure day, I woke up early, said goodbye to some of the participants and went to breakfast. I was surprised to find that it was just me and another participant at breakfast. It was lonely and I felt tears rolling down my cheeks. I never thought such a short time could influence me so positively, and I believe that sport has no barriers. It can bring people together all around the world.
Let me tell you how to be a queen.
To be a queen is not about clothes, money and materialistic things but it is about who sits on the throne of her heart. It is about what she allows to rule and reign out of her mouth.
Queens cherish every moment in life, a second is important, a minute counts and an hour is your whole life. Make sure you spend it with the attitude of a queen.
You are a queen, I am a queen, we are all queens. We are all created and born with a special queen factor. No man will ever survive without a queen in his heart and his life. We support our loved ones, friends, community, but your health comes first always. Remember healthy minds live in healthy bodies. I do not know about you but having this magnificent behavior empowers me. Never ever let anyone or anything break your spirit.
The following piece of work was written by Sonwabile of the Siyakhona group. Siyakhona is a programme in which we educate a selected number of gifted boys and girls about the power of creative expression especially through photography, video and social media.