Sanlam Cancer Challenge inspiring golfers to score for their communities

The Sanlam Cancer Challenge, South African golf’s biggest charity drive in the fight against cancer, will tee off its 23rd year at golf clubs around the country this month with thousands of amateur golfers joining together to try and beat the over R3.5 million raised last year.

Former Proteas cricket star Herschelle Gibbs is one of the thousands of South African golfers who supports the Sanlam Cancer Challenge. Credit: Sportzpics
Former Proteas cricket star Herschelle Gibbs is one of the thousands of South African golfers who supports the Sanlam Cancer Challenge. Credit: Sportzpics

From March to July, amateur golfers around South Africa will take part in their local golf club’s Sanlam Cancer Challenge golf days with the double aim of raising money for the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA) as well as trying to qualify for their respective regional finals.

The winners of the regional finals, which will be played from July to August, will then qualify for the National Finals to be played on both the Gary Player Country Club and Lost City Golf Club courses at Sun City from 9-12 October.

The shared spirit of being proactive in the battle against cancer is what underpins a tournament that is committed to using golf as the vehicle for social change in South Africa and inspiring golfers to work together as “Wealthsmiths” for the greater good of their community.

In 2015 this was epitomised by the Magersfontein Memorial Golf Estate near Kimberley whose golfers outperformed every other golf club when they raised a Sanlam Cancer Challenge record of R121 140 at a single golf day.

“We are a small community but many of us have been affected by this dreadful disease, and we have a lot of people who have a passion to help others and to contribute to CANSA,” said the local organiser Lizanne van Niekerk.

The Sanlam Cancer Challenge has in 23 years distinguished itself as a tournament that encourages people to become greater custodians of their health while at the same time working together for the good of those who are less privileged.

Last year golfer Anelie van Niekerk summed up this community spirit behind the tournament when she described her own story of surviving cancer. “You are surrounded by people who have gone on a similar journey and now walk this road with you. For that reason alone it remains an honour for me to support the Sanlam Cancer Challenge golf days. When I put that t-shirt on with the words ‘CANSA. Educate. Research. Support’, I remember again what a blessing it is to be alive. I am a survivor, and now I have the opportunity through to carry this message to others.”

In 2016, the Sanlam Cancer Challenge will encourage golfers to “Protect your passion by getting to know your sunscreen”.

“Our campaign this year is all about encouraging golfers to be proactive and to protect themselves against the sun,” says Sanlam Sponsorship Manager, Gary van Loggerenberg.

“The golfers who support the Sanlam Cancer Challenge do so come rain or shine. They are really dedicated to our cause, and as Wealthsmiths that is something we as a company certainly understand. But we want to encourage them to keep taking care of themselves out on the golf course.

“Since 1993 the Sanlam Cancer Challenge has proved that together we can help people to live better and how as a community of golfers we can become a major force in the constant fight against cancer.”

Registrations are now open at for the 2016 series.

For more information go to

About the Sanlam Cancer Challenge and CANSA

Sanlam and CANSA have partnered the Sanlam Cancer Challenge since 1993.

CANSA offers a unique integrated service to the public and all people affected by cancer. As a leading roleplayer in cancer research (more than R6 million spent annually), the scientific findings and knowledge gained from the research is used to realign CANSA’s health programmes as well as strengthen its watchdog role to the greater benefit of the public. CANSA’s wide-reaching health programmes include prevention and education campaigns, CANSA Care Centres that offer stoma and lymphoedema clinics, medical equipment hire, toll-free line and support to children and their families affected by cancer. There is also patient care and support in the form of 11 CANSA Care Homes for out-of-town cancer patients in the main metropolitan areas plus one hospitium (based in Polokwane) as well as two CANSA-TLC Lodges for paediatric oncology parents in Pretoria and Limpopo. Follow CANSA on Twitter: @CANSA ( and join CANSA on Facebook: CANSA: Fighting cancer in South Africa (, visit or call toll-free 0800 22 66 22 email:

The purpose of the Sanlam Cancer Challenge is to raise funds and awareness annually for the fight against cancer. In 2015, a total of 35 863 golfers played in 780 club competitions held around the country in support of CANSA’s prevention programmes and patient care support throughout the year. Visit

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