Meander Chronicle Reporter
The global pandemic has locked down our youth during a time of their lives when they were looking to spread their wings.
The past 18 months have tested the country’s resolve and demonstrated the incredible resilience of all sections of South African society. While the youth’s wings have been clipped temporary, they have shown that they may be locked down, but will not be held back.
As part of the 2021 SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge’s campaign, the food retailer encourages South African women to #LiveLimitless and break down the barriers in their lives, redefining any limits that exist.
“What seemed impossible to us before has now become daily life – working from home and caring for our children at the same time? Impossible before, and now an average day,” said Alison Zweers, MD of SPAR Western Cape.
“Making deals and holding meetings online? A strange and unknown concept that we now take in our stride. What further proof could you need to show that limitations are purely mental and how living without limits is truly possible.”
This year’s theme will be supporting Spar’s Petals Project, which advocates for a shame-free education for all young women.
There is a stigma and shame attached to their menstrual cycle for many young girls in South Africa. Due to the lack of access to simple hygiene products, in some cases they must make the difficult decision between embarrassment or education.
Entry fees for this year’s Virtual Challenge will support Petals Project, which aims to donate packs of sanitary pads to underprivileged girls, removing one of the limitations to their education.
SPAR said it was also proud to partner with three young South African women who embody what it means to #LiveLimitless.
Chantel Struwig, Zizipho Soldati and Shirnell Swartz are three exceptional young women who refused to allow the challenges and limitations they had to deal with from an early age to define them. Instead, they have broken these shackles turning their challenges into opportunities.
Struwig, born with a purplish-red mark covering most of her face, has become a vocal and virtual birthmark awareness advocate. Embracing her birthmark, the BCom Fashion student has overcome a negative self-image and encourages others to do the same using her social media platforms.
The 26-year-old Soldati is an award-winning filmmaker, content creator, social media influencer and aspiring model. Soldati has not allowed a rare condition that causes very short limbs, called phocomelia of the lower limbs, to put a limit on her dreams and ambitions.
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Swartz has excelled as a short speed skater representing SA at the Special Olympics, which has helped her discover her superb talent. She first got involved with Special Olympics South Africa when she was 13 years old at Casa De Sol School, where she discovered the sport.
This year you will again be able to not only create your own race number online, but you can also create your own certificate of completion – check out sparvirtualchallenge.co.za and follow the few easy steps.
Entrants living outside SA will unfortunately not receive a virtual challenge pack due to postal restrictions and courier fees. Their entry fee, however, will still contribute by donating a pack of sanitary products for a schoolgirl in need.
Athletics South Africa president, James Moloi, has thanked SPAR for hosting its virtual run this year, and arranging for six 10km standalone races to form the Grand Prix Series.
For more information on the SPAR Women’s Virtual Challenge, go to
EVENT DIARY DETAILS:
Date: September 4, 2021
Time: 6am-6pm (subject to lockdown restrictions)
Location: Virtual event (participants can select own route and distance)
Website and entries