Port Elizabeth, Friday 23 April 2021 – South African Paralympian, Ntando Mahlangu, celebrated his result from last weekend’s Athletics South Africa (ASA) Senior Track and Field Championships by paying it forward to the next generation.
Mahlangu, who is in action at this weekend’s Toyota SASAPD National Track and Field (24-26 April 2021) Championships at the Westbourne Oval in Gqeberha, clocked 1:44.99 in the Senior Men 800m final last Saturday for a new Paralympic T61 World Record!
However, it is the example that he is setting for kids born with the same severe congenital condition as his own that he is most proud of.
“I am happy with my result. It is such an honor to be included in the final line-up at an able-body event. Thank you ASA president, Aleck Skhosana, for having a vision of inclusion,” says Mahlangu.
To celebrate his world mark, the Rio 2016 200m Paralympic silver medalist on Monday (19 April 2021) paid a visit to the Jumping Kids Prosthetic Fund – the charity that gave him his start back in 2012, when he was fitted with his first set of Cheetah blades.
Jumping Kids is a registered NPO that provides access to prosthetic equipment, and holistic rehabilitative care, for children living with lower limb amputation. This week, under the watchful eye of Mahlangu, the organization fitted four boys, all born with congenital fibular-hemimelia, with their new custom manufactured prosthetic equipment
They were ecstatic to see their hero!
“It is an honor to be a role-model to the next generation. It is a responsibility I take very seriously. Kids born with my condition are usually confined to wheelchairs, unable to perform even the most basic tasks”.
“When they look at me, the kids see what is possible, and their parents are less afraid of what lies ahead. It is my vision to help more children get the prosthetic equipment they need to be empowered,” he concludes.