Meet The Man Behind 2Feet4TB
Never give up on something you can’t go a day without thinking about – Winston Churchill
Neal Anthony Stacey
TB Advocate ~ Activist ~ Survivor, founder of the 2FEET4TB Initiative. He has been a member of Carbineers WP Running club since 2016. Neal is a sports coach by profession, has coached Boys/Girls aged 3-7 years Ballskills/Soccer and Cricket aged 5 years & upwards for the past 28 years which he says is his preferred ages. Neal is passionate about promoting health and physical confidence in children of all ages. His motto is that learning a sport or physical skills should always be about having fun as this sets the basis for healthy lifestyles in the future.
Neal has a level 3 (UCB) United Cricket Board coaching qualification, managed the Western Province under 16 team and has facilitated Cricket coaching courses for the WPCA (Western Province Cricket Association) He has also coached women’s cricket. Neal is an avid sportsman and since being in school has participated in all forms of sport; such as cricket, soccer and badminton. He says – Give me a ball of any shape or size. A bat, racquet and I’ll be able to hold my own. Sport just runs through my veins. He is a dedicated runner and cyclist, has completed numerous marathons; including the Two Oceans and Comrades Ultra Marathon and 9 Capetown Cycle Tours. Neal is a father of three and a grand-dad of five.
How did it all start?
“Difficult roads lead to beautiful destinations” – Author Unknown
It all began when after an Achilles operation in January 2014 Neal Stacey expressed his desire to take part in running/cycling races in other Provinces in the Republic of South Africa.
(As much as it is on a runners wish list to participate in the Comrades Ultra Marathon, Tri-athletes in the Iron Man, and cyclists world wide in the Capetown Cycle Tour (Argus) Capetonians want to participate in events in the other provinces)
Neal pledged that he would fulfill his dream once he had fully recovered from his operation.
Our Outreach Programs
Through the 2Feet4TB initiative, TB Survivor – Activist and Founder Neal Stacey and his team aim to inspire hope in TB sufferers across South Africa – educating them about the possibility of a full recovery by taking the correct medication and proper nutrition.
2Feet4TB’s goal is to establish a TB-free environment for all strata of South African society by raising awareness that TB is a fully treatable and curable disease and to destigmatize TB through running and cycling, whilst promoting several charitable drives that will benefit TB patients from disadvantaged communities – The Impoverished – Destitute – Abandoned /Street Children.
Need some inspiration?
“Dreamers are given the gift to believe, if you believe, it can be life changing – Author Unknown
Neal thought that if he was going to do this, why not do it for a worthy cause. He saw so much media on AIDS awareness but never on the plight of TB sufferers, advocacy efforts for TB are contrasted starkly of those with HIV/AIDS.
Neal says – TB is just not spoken about and measures to support TB patients are not as readily available as those in place for Cancer Diabetes etc. The general public are so ill informed regarding TB despite the disease killing more people in South Africa than any other, Every 21 seconds someone in the world succumbs to TB.
Neal says that TB knows no boundaries and can affect all people regardless of age gender or social status. He believes that those who develop TB still face major discrimination from employers, friends and family. Yet, despite the health crisis posed by TB the disease is neglected. It’s like the Forgotten Disease but still remains the Silent Killer. Neal says – He was once told by his daughter – Dad !
Your potential is endless so go out, and do what you were created to do. So he decided to do something about it!! In life, a person occasionally gets the opportunity to do something great. When that time comes only two things matter: Being prepared to seize the moment and having the courage to give it your very best.
“Sport has the power to change the world… it has the power to inspire, create hope where once there was despair” – Nelson Mandela
Neal Thought to himself I’m a TB Survivor Run and Cycle so why not let my feet do the talking for TB There and then – 2Feet4TB was “born”
“Sometimes it’s the smallest decisions that can change your life forever” Keri Ressell
He is extremely excited to get started as he gets to help others help themselves by doing something he is so passionate about. For him its a Win-Win situation. Neal is a TB Survivor driven to help others. His journey aims to share light on TB that it has no borders or creed. It can affect all people regardless of age, gender or social status. He maintains that anyone can get and overcome TB which includes fit and healthy people. Silence is what makes TB invisible.
Undertake to network with other charity organizations.
Bring to the attention of the SA public that TB can affect anyone.
Educate those diagnosed with TB the importance of completing the 180 day treatment cycle
Recruit athletes in other provinces to perform similar programmes.
Commit to participate in programmes to improve TB prevention awareness and care.
Undertake to initiate a pilot TB awareness programme earmarked at primary-school level.
Liaise with S.A.N.T.A.and its affiliates to improve on their community-based programmes.
Organize a major sports event during National TB week.
Start a support program for children discharged from hospital after TB treatment
Involve the private sector and the SA public in the drive to fight TB.
Support TB hospitals and associated clinics nationwide
“It’s in your hands to create a better world to live in” – Nelson Mandela
Over the next 7 year period (2017-2024) Neal will be using his feet via Cycling & Running and participate in every road Cycling race ~ Standard Marathon/Ultra Marathon in the Republic of South Africa as per the CSA (Cycling South Africa) & ASA (Athletic South Africa) cycling and running calendar
e.g. For every Km covered a sponsored food item (see list) by donars will be given to kids who have TB with the proviso that they form part of the DOT (Direct Observation Treatment)
2FEET4TB also aims to educate TB patients of the 180 day Rule
You must find something that you are passionate about and are willing to sacrifice a lot to achieve – Howard Schultz
- Eradicate the misconceptions and Stigma surrounding TB that it’s not just a poor mans disease.
- To override the belief that fit healthy people of ALL races cannot get it.
- Educate TB sufferers that proper Nutrition together with the correct daily medication regime (complete the 180 day cycle) is the key towards a full recovery.
- Shedding light on TB that it’s airborne, anyone can get it but doesn’t define who you are.
- Using the 2FEET4TB initiative journey to help TB patients, encouraging them that YOU’LL NEVER WALK ALONE letting them know there is hope, that those affected by TB are doing something about it.
- Take appropriate steps to ensure that they don’t suffer the way WE did.
“Failure comes only when we forget our Objectives Ideals and principles” – Jawaharlal Nehru
- Fulfill our social responsibility role by conducting various sustainable projects creating a platform to empower TB patients and family members promoting Health & wellness, and food security programs.
- Form collaborations with TB Research organizations to enable, promote research and perform various studies on TB patients.
- Empower people with TB and the communities through food security partnerships.
- Recognize, help safeguard and protect the rights of people with TB by lobbying stakeholders and work in co-ordination with the scientific and public health communities to use the law as a tool to eliminate the disease.
- Unite the public, private sector and TB affiliates in the fight against TB stressing the importance of proper nutrition and food security.
- Raise awareness outside of the TB community, linking up with other initiatives, bolstering 2Feet4TB momentum