Sandile Mbili’s mile of courage2016-06-06
Sandile Mbili is a quiet, soft-spoken boy from Diepsloot near Johannesburg. When he was 13, the now 17-year-old lost both his legs below the knee as the result of an infection, leaving him bound to a wheelchair.
However, with the help of non-profits One School At A Time and Jumping Kids, who gave Sandile a brand new set of prosthetic legs, this courageous teenager is not only able to walk again, but he also ran a part of this year’s Comrades Marathon!
Losing his legs was a devastating blow to Sandile – the township is not exactly a wheelchair-friendly place – and the challenges he faced put a big dent in his self-confidence. Even his schoolwork suffered.
“People were always staring and looking at me. I couldn’t get to where I wanted to go, because of steps, always having to rely on somebody to help me – it made me feel ashamed of myself.”
Despite these challenges, Sandile stayed strong and positive, and with the moral support of his sister and Bronwyn James from One School at a Time, his confidence was quickly restored.
“I’ve become different and my life has changed for the better, I can do anything and go anywhere – I have freedom again. I am able to run and play cricket again.”
Sandile Mbili truly leads a SuperLife, his positive attitude and determination to overcome the obstacles brought about by his disability serves as an inspiration for all, not just amputees. This year he took things a step further; with encouragement from the #GoSandile social media campaign – where people from all over South Africa showed him their support – Sandile ran part of this year’s Comrades Marathon to raise awareness for child amputees. On Sunday, 29 May he ran the Nedbank Green Mile, a 1.6km section of the Comrades route that winds through the suburb of Kloof.
Sandile’s path was paved by messages of encouragement sent via Twitter, spurring him on to complete this epic challenge and show the world what hard work, determination and living a SuperLife can achieve.
Show Sandile your support by sending him a tweet using the hashtag #GoSandile