Durban: Six talented rugby and soccer players from The Sharks Academy had their dreams come true, all thanks to the incredible support of the Hollywood Foundation. This collaboration between the Foundation and The Sharks Academy aims to provide deserving students from disadvantaged backgrounds with the opportunity to pursue their education and rugby careers.
The bursaries awarded by the Hollywood Foundation offers financial support to students at The Sharks Academy, relieving the recipients of any financial burden. This enables them to fully focus on their academic and athletic development. A bursary handover event was held at Hollywoodbets’ offices in Umhlanga on Thursday, 18 May 2023, attended by representatives from both the Hollywood Foundation and The Sharks Academy.
After the handover, the beneficiaries were taken on a tour around the building where the warm-hearted Purple Family, consisting of Hollywoodbets’ employees, welcomed the bursary recipients, congratulated them and wished them tremendous success in their academic and sports pursuits. Thereafter, they visited 60 Richefond Circle building.
This partnership between the Foundation and The Sharks began in 2019 when Hollywoodbets proudly signed on as an associate sponsor. It serves as a testament to their commitment to empowering youth through educational development and supporting disadvantaged communities. By investing in the future of these young rugby and soccer players, the Hollywood Foundation is making a significant difference in their lives, while simultaneously shaping a brighter future for South Africa.
This year’s bursary recipients, namely Jayda Smith, Phathushedzo Radzilani, Thendo Netshidzato, Otlotleng Menoe, Pernel Ngubo, and Keziah Manuel, represent a promising group of individuals. They will pursue courses in Sports and Leisure Management as well as in Sport, Recreation and Fitness Management.
Second year bursary recipient Phathushedzo Radzilani said, “Being a returning student, I am fully aware that better time management skills are crucial for me to succeed, considering the increased workload. I have committed myself to reach out for help if needed, knowing that support is available. It is my responsibility to set a positive example for the new group of students entering the bursary programme.I am grateful for the continued support from The Sharks Academy and the Hollywood Foundation. Together, we are shaping my future and making a difference in the lives of aspiring rugby and soccer players.”
Michael Horak, The Sharks High Performance Manager, expressed gratitude for the Hollywood Foundation’s unwavering support. He emphasised the importance of nurturing and investing in the youth, as they form the foundation of The Sharks. He said, “Our Hollywoodbets Family and their continued generosity and support allows us to aid our young learners with the support and guidance they need, all whilst paving the way for life after sport and studies. A huge and sincere thank you to our Purple Family for everything that you have done and continue to do for the learners at The Sharks Academy. We appreciate you, value our relationship and know that there are only but great things to come from these young learners.” Devin Heffer, Hollywoodbets Brand and Communications manager said,”Hollywoodbets congratulates the six bursary recipients from The Sharks Academy and welcome them to the Hollywood family! This is the second year we are doing this initiative through the Hollywood Foundation, and it is fantastic to welcome two female recipients to the group this year. We look forward to supporting them through their ventures on the rugby and soccer fields, and most importantly, with their academic achievements in the classroom.”