South African Swimmer, Emma Chelius, visits Holy Family College
Holy Family College was blessed to have South African swimmer Emma Chelius as a guest speaker at the school. Emma broke her own national women’s 50m freestyle mark at the Tokyo Olympics, advancing to the semi-finals.
Emma attended school at St Mary’s DSG with our Grade 1 teacher, Maxine Spalding. Ms Spalding followed Emma’s achievements through the years, teaching her class about the Olympics, the sports involved and even watched Emma’s swimming race online.
Emma’s Philosophy: “I love to compete and have goals to strive towards. Swimming is a very big part of my life and it has helped to shape who I am today. I love the unity that swimming brings to people, being part of such a sport means being a part of a different world, where people from all backgrounds speak the same language.”
At the end of last year, the Olympic Games were postponed due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. Emma spoke about being discouraged and disappointed. She found comfort in speaking to other people about her feelings. Emma went through quite a journey before making it to the Olympics – getting back into peak condition, enduring the second wave of Covid and the civil unrest in July.
This was a sad time to leave and a rocky start to her Olympic experience but she arrived with top athletes of the world. Emma says there was a huge sense of responsibility to bring hope and light to the situation in South Africa, which made them appreciate the Olympics so much more.
The South African Olympic outfits were sponsored by Mr Price Sports. Emma said the eye-catching outfits broke down barriers and sparked conversation with other athletes from around the world. Learners enjoyed a Q & A session with Emma and left the hall feeling inspired and motivated! Follow Emma’s journey https://www.facebook.com/emchelius