Botswana: HSB to Introduce Equestrian Sport

Gaborone — Horse Society of Botswana (HSB) president, Benjamin Maekopo says HSB has embarked on a mission to introduce and intensify equestrian sport at grassroot level.

Speaking in an interview on October 23 during the endurance and fun horse ride, he said though the equestrian sport code present empowerment opportunities people did not know much about it while some perceive it as a foreign activity.

He said their target in the next 12 months was to reached out to 250 kids aged 9-12 years in Greater Gaborone, Gweta, Gantsi, Maun, Nata and Francistown.

"Our set target is going on well. Currently a lot of parents as far as Kasane have shown interest to enroll their children.

Maekopo noted that FEI Solidarity had also given them support through a sponsorship of P100 000 adding that part of the sponsorship, would be used to pay for training fees for all registered children for a period of five weeks.

"Once the period elapses, parents will start to pay for their children until the end of the training session," he said.

He said registered children would undergo a five-week training session to expose them to basic understanding of horse management, welfare of the horse, stable management and equipment to be used for horses during rides among others.

Maekopo said some opportunities that comes along with equestrian sport included development of officials such as coaches, judges, farriers, stewards who stands a chance to be engaged on a long term employment opportunity.

Member of Parliament for Mochudi West, also Minister of, Minister of infrastructure and Housing Development, Mmusi Kgafela graced the event and embraced the sport saying it could be professionalised to benefit locals.

He said the sport was an ideal way towards economic diversification and promotion of local tourism.

Source : BOPA

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