Madidimalo Emmanuel Mukondeleli from Gogobolo. Photo supplied.
Madidimalo Emmanuel Mukondeleli, a 37-year-old long-distance runner from Gogobole village, is dedicated to making a positive impact on the lives of those around him. Madidimalo is the founder of the Emmanuel Sports and Recreation Athletics Club (ESR), a platform through which he encourages children to stay active, fit, and focused, providing them with a healthy diversion.
Madidimalo’s journey into the world of long-distance running began several years ago, and he has already completed challenging races such as the Comrades Marathon, the Two Oceans Marathon, the Soweto Marathon, and the Soutpansberg Mountain Race.
ESR was established two years ago and currently boasts 34 members. In a recent conversation with Limpopo Mirror, Madidimalo said that the club also welcomed orphaned children who had a passion for running, offering them guidance on how to balance their running pursuits with their school commitments.
“As a coach and a runner since 2005, I have gained extensive experience in the sport. I too grew up as an orphaned child. In addition to training, we instil values such as respect, love, responsibility, discipline, and concern for their families. We provide an alternative to life on the streets, giving these young athletes the opportunity to focus on their education and sports. ESR is nurturing the leaders of tomorrow,” he explained.
According to Madidimalo, the team has performed admirably in various marathons, including the Mountain Race, where they secured the second position in the 32km category this year. “We take pride in having some of the finest local marathon runners, which is why we are seeking sponsorships to participate in upcoming races. We also require assistance with running equipment, transportation expenses, accommodation, and race registration fees,” he added.
Date:28 October 2023
Thembi Siaga started as an intern during 2021. He assisted with video photography and editing. He also produced numerous small documentaries, focusing on the Vhembe region and its people. Currently he works as a freelance journalist, covering stories in the Elim area.
Thembi studied at the Tshwane University of Technology, where he completed his diploma in Journalism in 2021.