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Lenovo and Intel cements the World Cup legacy for 7 000 underprivileged children

   

Lenovo and Intel cements the World Cup legacy for 7 000 underprivileged children

December 15, 2010: 2010 will be remembered in South Africa for the success of the Soccer World Cup. However, more than 7 000 children at disadvantaged primary schools will also remember 2010 for the project known as Legends, where Lenovo and Intel South Africa provided 60 teachers and more than 7000 children an opportunity to be developed into soccer players of a quality to enable them to join South African soccer academies.

“At Lenovo and Intel we wanted the Soccer World Cup to create a lasting legacy for the country’s youth this is why we initiated the Lenovo Legends project,” says Lenovo South Africa marketing manager, Monique de Klerk.

“We chose South African soccer legend, Lucas Radebe, the former Bafana Bafana and Leeds United captain, as Lenovo & Intel’s brand ambassador for 2010, this seemed only appropriate in the year where South Africa and soccer took centre stage. We also launched an innovative notebook aimed at young entrepreneurs, the Lenovo ThinkPad Edge powered by Intel Core family of processors. Both Lucas Radebe and the ThinkPad landed themselves well to the Legends theme. Further to this the company who purchased the PC and Notebook business from IBM was called Legends and this was the birth of Lenovo.”

“Following the Legends theme it made sense, therefore, to find a way to encourage innovation and confidence in children – South Africa’s future legends. Lenovo and Intel chose to do this by using sports development in particular and soccer development to help launch tomorrow’s legends” says de Klerk.

Lenovo and Intel worked closely with Active Education to help 10 schools in the south of Johannesburg fill a gap in their curriculum by training teachers in a sustainable approach to physical education – and, in addition, develop soccer talent in each school.

Active Education’s activity programmes ensure that children progress in healthy ways, developing strength, fitness, agility and skills, with friendships and social development enriched through group and team participation. Six teachers in each school were trained in physical education and provided with equipment in order to enable them to meet the Department of Education’s requirement that each child have two hours of physical education per week. They also provided guidance to teachers on the use of a scientifically-based programme that matches physical education activities to the capabilities of the children in a given class.

“No child is asked to do any exercise that his or her physical development at the time would make difficult or unpleasant,” says Bruce Smuts, Active Education CEO. “At the same time, the programme of activities is designed to strengthen the child’s body in the most appropriate way, so that physical exercise becomes both easier and more fun.”

While assessing all the children in each school for general physical education capabilities, the Active Education team also conducted scientific assessments, on paper, designed to identify those boys with a high order of talent for soccer.

“The theory is that one should be able – without watching a child actually play - to tell from testing his stamina, agility, and explosive power, along with some basic soccer skills, whether or not he would be good at playing soccer and having had the boys we selected train and practice twice a week for almost a year, we’ve proved the theory. You really can tell, scientifically, who will be a good player and who won’t.”

Of the 14 boys initially selected via the scientific and skills tests, 11 were chosen to play as a member of the Legends team, with the team playing four matches, including a friendly against former Bafana Bafana and Leeds United captain, Lucas Radebe and other well known players.

In addition to all this, each school produced an art canvas depicting a view of sports in education and two of the schools won the services of a professional coach for soccer and netball for the duration of one year to continue to build the teams.

“This has been a significant project for Lenovo and Intel and one which we hold dear to our hearts” says Ntombezinhle Modiselle, public relations manager at Intel South Africa. “We’re very proud of the fact that the boys, all from different schools, knitted into such an effective team that they drew two and won one of the three matches they played against development and district teams with much more experience. We are certain that the success of this project will indeed leave a lasting legacy of the 2010 Soccer World Cup when we look forward to hopefully seeing one of the boys play for Bafana Bafana in the future.”

Each boy’s name will be put forward to South Africa’s various soccer academies.

About Lenovo

Lenovo (HKSE: 0992) (ADR: LNVGY) is dedicated to building exceptionally engineered personal computers. Lenovo’s business model is built on innovation, operational efficiency and customer satisfaction as well as a focus on investment in emerging markets. Formed by Lenovo Group’s acquisition of the former IBM Personal Computing Division, the company develops, manufactures and markets reliable, high-quality, secure and easy-to-use technology products and services worldwide. Lenovo has major research centers in Yamato, Japan; Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, China; and Raleigh, North Carolina. For more information see www.lenovo.co.za

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About Intel

Intel, the world leader in silicon innovation, develops technologies, products and initiatives to continually advance how people work and live. Additional information about Intel is available at www.intel.com/pressroom and blogs.intel.com.

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Press contacts

Monique de Klerk
Tel: 011 911 2018
Email: mdeklerk@lenovo.com

Ntombezinhle Modiselle
+27 11 806 4530
Ntombezinhle.modiselle@intel.com

Anique Human
Tel: 011 548 2000 / 2010
Email: anique.human@fleishman.co.za