A new world-class sports ground has been opened in the township of Philippi, Cape Town, after a 12-year process.
Part of the struggle related to the fact that the land was a water detention pond, assisting in the drainage from the surrounding informal settlement.
Fortunately the architect, Luyanda Mpahlwa, designed it in such a way that the special heavy-duty astroturf could handle heavy rainfall, while the field is fringed by a drainage system to prevent flooding in the area during downpours.
The facility was partially funded by the Philipp Lahm Foundation, which was founded by the former Germany and Bayern Munich captain. Lahm attended in person to open the sports ground on Saturday.
Philippi-based community centre iThemba Labantu now boasts the sports facility, in addition to its existing soup kitchen, pre-school and youth training centre, helping to improve the lives of the poverty-stricken children in the area.