Anne Siroky’s Honour Deserved

Anne Siroky receives the annual Shoprite Checkers/SABC2 Woman of the Year Award in Cape Town on Thursday.  
Ms Anne Siroky who at the age of 37 became the number 1 beach volleyball player in South Africa and travelled all over the world to represent her country has been announced the winner in the 2007 sport category of the prestigious Shoprite Checkers/SABC2 Woman of the Year Award.

She is currently running The Future Factory, a Western Cape-based sport academy, working with more than 150 000 children in 50 schools where all the Olympic sport codes, as well as cricket, netball, table tennis and golf are taught. It consists of three major parts, life skills, specialist coaching and a wizard programme.
Ms Siroky accepted her award at a dazzling gala event to celebrate women in South Africa, held in Cape Town on Thursday 26 July, and said that sport has been a huge part of her life since a child, and that she is honoured to be awarded for doing something that she loves.
“Winning this is a chance to acknowledge the tireless work of all our coaches and volunteers, who are teaching in each of our schools and on our various projects,” said Ms Siroky.
“The Future Factory has always been about the community members and the whole team (is) involved, working together to achieve a goal of safer and happier communities. Winning this Award is now showcasing those people, (and)  what they have achieved.
“The work I do, is not done alone. There are so many people who help run these programs, from community members, to my family, to coaches and international volunteers. I want to say thank you to everyone involved. Winning this will help to sustain the future of The Future Factory so we can keep going and keep expanding,” she concluded.
The Fun Factory programme’s have now grown to also include team building and motivation, indigenous games, feeding over a thousand kids per week, community projects and special attention to HIV/AIDS and children with physical disabilities.
While children are participating in the The Future Factory programs they are busy learning which keeps them off the streets and away from gangs, doing drugs or other negative activity.
Ms Siroky started The Future Factory six years ago in 2 schools and is now working in 50 schools. In almost half of these schools she now has PT classes once a week for learners which have for many been a life changing experience. For example eight students from the Zerilda Park Primary School in Lavender Hill have developed their skills enough to make provincial and national volleyball teams, even traveling to Croatia.
She has brought over 100 international volunteers to South Africa to share their sports skills with South African township children. In 2005 her program won the South African Student Travel Services Project of the Year.
Ms Siroky is also the head facilitator for the Department of Community Safety Bambanani program, working with over 4 000 children during the Christmas school holidays, and has become a sought-after motivational speaker and master of ceremonies, at events including the Adderley Street night market, and Government programs.
Her most recent project has been taking teens from townships, including some who have been struggling with drugs, forming a dance group and getting them to stay clean and perform.
They have danced for 30 schools in 8 days. This has changed these children’s lives as they are engaged in something worthwhile and don’t need to get involved in criminal activities.
The other two finalists were Ms Beaulah Schoeman, the managing director of Motorsport South Africa (MSA, the governing body for motorsport in the country) and the only South African who has ever served on the World Council of any World Motorsport Federation; and Ms Lydia Monyepao, an accountant and former Banyana Banyana squad member, who is currently the chairperson of Soweto Ladies Football Club.
This dazzling gala event at which the winners was announced will be broadcast at 21h00 on SABC 2 on Wednesday, 8 August 2007 and at 10h30 on Thursday, 9 August 2007 – National Women’s Day.
Nationwide was for the first year running the official carrier of the Shoprite Checkers / SABC 2 Woman of the Year Award while Sun International’s flagship Table Bay Hotel hosted the finalists and judges in Cape Town, and Avis Car-Hire provided transported.
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Launched in 2006, gsport exists to enhance the commercial prospects of our women athletes, and other women in sport, by telling the inspiring story of SA women in sport. Thank you for your contribution!

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