Ayanda Cuba

Co-founder, Sporting Code

Sports has a special meaning for Ayanda Cuba (27). “Sports helps bring stability and discipline to a child’s life,” he says. “Growing up in an impoverished community, a child is influenced by a lot of different negative things and as a result, they can make the wrong decisions in life. So sports can be used as a catalyst and platform towards channelling opportunities for them.” Together with his friend Buntu Motole, in 2015 Cuba founded Sporting Code, a Khayelitsha organisation that aims to uplift underprivileged communities through sport. Sporting Code hosts monthly sports fun days where communities can participate in five-a-side soccer and netball. These events attract children and youth from as far afield as Philippi, Delft and Nyanga. The organisation also runs basketball and handball coaching clinics. Cuba recently watched a basketball team he coaches from a special needs school play their first game and win. “Watching two years of hard work and commitment take shape was one of my proudest moments,” he says. Cuba was also recently involved in bringing young women from the area together to play in a netball tournament, forming fourteen self-managed teams.

As a result of its growth Sporting Code has been able to offer a Sports is Power tourism experience to the public via Airbnb. People jog through the streets of Khayelitsha, eat healthy food at the Spinach King Café, assist with a basketball clinic and have shisa nyama at Rands Cape, a trendy lifestyle space. “This is a tour experience where we use sports to break down social barriers and highlight the importance of keeping active, and investing in children,” he explains.

Cuba is a Raymond Ackerman graduate and a graphic designer. He is also the founder of About Brands Communities and Designs Concepts, the income from which assists in running Sporting Code, together with the Airbnb experiences it offers. Next on the cards is the launch of #BuildSchoolFieldCampaign, aimed at building quality school fields for schools in impoverished communities. “Our future goals are to see township schools have proper playing facilities, to ensure that kids have access to proper sporting opportunities and to have at least a child in almost every community participating in at least one sporting code.”

— Fatima Asmal

Facebook: facebook.com/ayandatheodore.cuba