Racial and gender inequality permeates the golfing world and Lerato Moloko is addressing the issue head-on and growing the game by focusing on representation.
From beekeeping to golfing, Lerato Moloko is a talented entrepreneur who, above all else, is motivated to create social change in South Africa. Her project, The Grip, was founded with the aim to drive development through golf, and started off by collecting golfing gloves for junior golfers taking part in development programmes.
The idea for this initiative was sparked when Moloko was playing a round of golf with two seniors and one junior golfer and noticed that the junior golfer was playing without a golf glove — a golfing necessity, as it offers protection and provides a tighter grip as you hold the club. A couple of months later, she asked friends and family to sponsor gloves for these junior golfers. After collecting a range of equipment, including bags and gloves, The Grip was born, and the project has been on the up ever since.
Building on the progress that’s already been made with the project’s focus on this particularly important piece of equipment, The Grip now has its own brand of golf glove. The brand acts as a sponsor for young golfers in South Africa by providing gloves to them, and the gloves are also sold to the public to raise funds to enable The Grip’s specific endeavours.
Golf is an elite sport, however, children participating in the development programmes powered by The Grip are not from affluent families. Moloko aims to change the longstanding narrative of how the sport is perceived, especially in South Africa. Through The Grip, there is the opportunity to create social change — to allow children to step out of their comfort zone and experience a game that, for centuries, has only been accessible to the wealthy elite. What makes Moloko all the more inspiring is that her efforts to aid the community don’t end at providing golfing gear.
After the festive season, she noticed that some of the children involved in the programmes didn’t have school shoes. The Grip took up the task of addressing this and organised a shoe drive, which collected and distributed 44 pairs of shoes for boys and 19 pairs of shoes for girls within a month. Giving back to the community is essential for Moloko, and she urges younger generations to get involved.
“Volunteer, volunteer, volunteer. Put yourself forward by offering your time and talents to the community. You get to learn more about yourself, you get to build up your networks, you get to understand what work ethics are and you get to test your ideas.”
Racial and gender inequality permeates the golfing world and Moloko is addressing the issue head-on by growing the game in terms of representation. Her selfless, inspirational approach to life is inspiring the youth of South Africa to change the narrative of the sport and is energising them to act. Being a powerful woman to her means being inspirational and hopeful — sharing her influence to enlighten others and enabling the energy of power to continue to flow.