12 May 2017

Botswana: Support Montsho Campaign Launches

Photo: Chell Hill/Wikipedia
Amantle Montsho.

Gaborone — Athletes Commission (AC) has embarked on the Support Amantle Montsho Campaign to ensure that the country's first gold medalist at the 2011 World Championships, continues to represent the country with dignity and pride.

Support Amantle Montsho initiative is a private project whose objective is to mobilise support for Amantle Montsho who is back in competition after two years break.

Montsho has already qualified for the August 2017 IAAF World Championships to be held in London, but she is no longer illegible for Olympic Solidarity scholarships due to her age.

For her to perform well at the World Championships, she would need among others, high performance camping, medical support and injury rehabilitation.

Therefore AC found it imperative to raise funds for preparation and competition as they believe that would help the athlete to end her career with dignity.

This will also prepare her for transition from competition to a productive post competition life and sport ambassador duties.

Speaking at the launch on May 9, former runner California Molefe said Support Amantle Montsho campaign was a pilot project to test the response of the market.

He said their wish was that should the project succeed, it would be extended to more athletes and inspire other sporting codes.

"I want to appeal to you all including the corporate citizens to embrace the initiative so that we can indeed demonstrate that in Botswana sport can be a career," he said.

Retired football legend, Diphetogo Selolwane said transition was the most difficult thing to accept when a career in sport came to an end.

He said during this period, athletes required more support from family and all stake holders.

"I am comforted that we have this event to support an athlete who has given so much to Botswana athletics and has inspired the nation. I do understand how you feel when you are frustrated, just know that you are not alone, we love you, we support you. Things are changing of late, athletes are looking into getting into positions of power so as to assist the next generation," he said.

For her part, Montsho said life was never easy for an elite athlete but with Batswana's support and goodwill she managed to persevere.

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