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Vodacom Father and Son Campout Postponed
So, the world is facing something pretty big at the moment and as Captain America would tell us, that means making some tough decisions.
Unfortunately, we have had to postpone our Vodacom Father and Son Campout as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We will now be hosting this epic event on 10-11 October.
It’s a decision we’ve taken based on the President’s address to the nation, and the safety of all fathers and sons as our primary concern.
The good news is that the current pool of entries will remain exactly as they are. It is from this same pool of entries that we will select the lucky winners on 1 September. Vodacom Red fathers will not have to re-enter, and will stand exactly the same chance of winning in September as they did now.
As our President has urged us, now is the time to stand together as South Africans and do everything we can to contain the spread of this virus.
It’s real-life hero time, Dads.
And we’re with you on this one.
The bold number 1 that sits on the back of Lizo Gqoboka’s jersey represents more than just his status as the Vodacom Bulls’ powerful loosehead prop and a rising Springbok front-row prospect, but also what he considers his number one priority in life. Fatherhood.
The human mountain that was born near Mount Frere in the Eastern Cape is now the father of two boys, one aged 12 years and another aged 19 months. But he is also “father” to his nephews. And he plays the role of “father” within his home community through his foundation.
Even in the days when he had to endure hunger, months of unemployment, financial collapse and complete uncertainty about his rugby career, Gqoboka dutifully looked after his parents, supported his sister and brother and even a young boxer in whom he believed. He has never been afraid to assume the leadership role that comes so naturally to him. A role he believes is perfectly exemplified in fatherhood.
'It’s a massive responsibility, but one I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world,' says Gqoboka, who encourages Vodacom Red clients to register themselves and their son/s for the Vodacom Father and Son Campout at Loftus Versfeld from 28-29 March. The event speaks to everything Gqoboka believes about the importance of fatherhood and the #BeAPresentDad movement. And of course, it’s also a great opportunity to sleep in a tent on the main field of one of the most iconic rugby stadiums in the world, take part in a host of games and activities with your son, and have him meet Vodacom Bulls players, sports stars and celebrities.
'The Vodacom Bulls is a family-orientated union and we all know how important the relationship between a father and son is. Your father is your immediate hero,' says Gqoboka, whose own father inspired in him the importance of being a father to the fatherless.
'I saw how my father treated not only me but other children around him. We had kids staying with us that weren’t direct family, but they had lost their own parents. And he looked after them. So it wasn’t a foreign thing for me to do the same with my nephews when their father didn’t want to support them.
'They stayed with me and it just came naturally to me to take care of them. It’s a massive responsibility because they look at me as their immediate role model. There are a lot of things you need to teach them, and some uncomfortable conversations in our culture that you need to have with them. But as a modern-day father you need to have these conversations.'
Gqoboka’s deep faith is what keeps pushing him to make as much of an impact off the field as he does on it and in the lives of the children in his care.
'I want to make sure they have good values. There is a verse in the bible I love which basically says you must teach your children the right way to go when they are young, and then when they are old they will not depart from it. That’s the responsibility I have as a father.
'Fatherhood changes you for the better. You become a better person. You become more selfless. And it brings you so much joy. It doesn’t matter how tired I am after training. When I come back home and open the garage and see my son standing there waiting for me, it’s those things that money can’t buy.'
The Vodacom Bulls’ number 1 father has indeed never taken his eye off his role within a bigger, and far more important, team.
To register to attend the Vodacom Father and Son Campout at Loftus Versfeld with your son/s visit Vodacom online and click on Red Rugby Rewards.