The Springboks are the 2019 Rugby World Champions and the Overstrand has been catapulted into the international arena of big-league cities with its UNESCO Creative City designation for Gastronomy.
Two seemingly different stories but, if you think about it, there is a common thread between the two.
Twenty months ago, the Springboks were an impoverished team, losing by record margins with very little prospects for improvement. But under coach Rassie Erasmus and captain, Siya Kolisi, things changed. While the journey was not easy, with several missteps along the way, the goal always remained winning the Webb Ellis Cup.
“We come from different backgrounds, different races. We came together with one goal. We wanted to achieve it. I really hope that we have done that for South Africa, to show that we can pull together if we ultimately want to win and to achieve something,” said Siya in his first interview after the final whistle had blown.
On Saturday, the Springboks represented the very best of South Africa: integrated, determined, positive, team-players, forward-thinking, professional, humble and yes, champions.
In the same way, the last two years have been challenging for the Overstrand. But committed individuals, spurred on by the vision of Darryl Earl David, came together with a plan to take the Overstrand to the next level by submitting an application to UNESCO, the international body whose declared purpose is to contribute to promoting international collaboration in education, science and culture in order to increase universal respect for justice, the rule of law, and human rights.
With its designation as a Creative City for Gastronomy, the Overstrand has been given a golden opportunity to showcase itself on the global stage, just as the Springboks were by winning the Rugby World Cup.
With only 36 cities worldwide having received the Gastronomy designation, Overstrand Hermanus, the only African city, can really shine by focusing the spotlight on all the creativity that abounds in our communities. We have four years to do this.
What is abundantly clear is that if we, as a united community, exhibit the same qualities as the Springboks, we will succeed.