News agency, Cape Town, South Africa
Thursday September 19th 2019

Amputee aims for Paralympics after shack fire

01.08.2012

Film director and Guts2Glory trustee Lee Mc Queen, athlete Ntsikelelo Mdlalana and Guts2Glory fundraiser Robyn Lambrick hope to get Mdlanlana to the 2014 paralympic games. Photo: Peter Luhanga/WCN

Instead of giving in to despair after having his leg amputated when it was badly burnt in a  shack fire, a Khayelitsha man is participating in provincial athletics and has his sights set on the 2014 paralympics.

Ntsikilelo Mdlalana, who lost his leg four years ago at the age of 27, is able to participate in sports thanks to Guts2Glory, a non-profit organisation, helping him to obtain a R1m prosthetic leg.

Additionally, a Du Noon youth, Norman Mazibuko, has written a movie script based on Mdlalana’s survival of the shack fire and his determination to eke out a living through active participation in athletics.

Guts2 Glory – a not for profit organisation which raises funds for disabled and disadvantaged athletes – plans to source funding to shoot Mdlalana’s feature film, said director and Guts2Glory trustee Lee Mc Queen, who is at the moment organising UK film students to shoot the movie in Du Noon.

Before he got a prosthetic leg in August last year, Mdlalana used to run races using a single crutch, said Mc Queen, who is also Mdlalana’s personal trainer.

“Last year he competed in the Western Province Athletics but did not make it as we had only just acquired his prosthetic leg. He was used to running using his crutch and was still getting used to his new leg,” she said.

Mdlalana said he initially lost hope after the shack fire that claimed his leg, as it also claimed the life of a friend he had grown up with and shared a one-room shack with in Makhaza, Khayelitsha.

A candle left burning was the cause of the fire and while he managed to crawl to safety his friend did not make it.

McQueen said because the Khayelitsha Athletics Club was not disabled friendly Mdlalana had registered at Maties in Stellenbosch where he was classified to run in the 200, 400 and 800 metre races.

He also played basketball, rode horses, threw javelin and played soccer.

He was now training to participate in the 2014 Winter Olympics to be held in Sochi, Russia.

Prior to getting his prosthesis leg, Mdlalana said he partook in the Crazy Chick Challenge where he and another amputee challenged 25 able bodied people to hike Table Mountain in 2010.

Guts2Glory fundraiser Robyn Lambrick said the idea to shoot a feature film based on Mdlalana story was to encourage people who had lost everything to regain control of their lives.

“It’s about your mind power,” said Lambrick. – Peter Luhanga

Tags: 2014 paralympics, Crazy Chick Challenge, Du Noon, Guts2Glory, Khayelitsha, Lee Mc Queen, Maties, Norman Mazibuko, Ntsikilelo Mdlalana, prosthetic leg, provincial athletics, Robyn Lambrick, Russia, Sochi, Stellenbosch, Table Mountain, Western Province Athletics

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