Qaphela Titus Gobodo, a young teenage boy from a humble background in Wellington, Western Cape, South Africa, is one of the most hardworking teenager that God brought out of Wellington.
His biggest dream in life was to be a professional rugby player, to play for Springboks. He gave his whole life to it and the results were amazing.
He was the greatest rugby player in his school in Bergriver and he became the first black captain of his school’s rugby team, and the first black student to play in the team.
He was the pride of Bergriver rugby team.
His hard work brought him closer to his dream of playing for Springboks.
In 2016 when he was just 15 years old, he won a rugby scholarship to Hoerskool Garsfontein, one of the most prestigious schools in Pretoria.
Through this scholarship his dream of making it to Springboks would be realized.
His family were so happy and of course proud of him.
And then he shared the news to his teammates, as friends will always do. “Hey, guys, I’m one step away from Springboks! The dream is happening.” But little did he know that not everyone is proud of your success. His teammates grew so much jealousy for him.
In the same year 2016, a sad and touching incident happened to Gobodo.
It was on one fateful afternoon, when he took an excuse from class to go use the restroom. While coming outside from there, a group of four boys attacked him. One hit him with a golf stick on his head, and he fell unconsciousness on the floor. They then poured paraffin oil on him, and set him ablaze.
He laid unconscious on the ground for several minutes so he wasn’t aware that he was burning alive and no one saw him there.
when he regained consciousness some minutes later, he got up after much struggles and ran towards the principal’s office screaming for help with his body still on fire. No one neared him because they were all terrified. But he ran to the tap, opened it and went under it to reduce the fire. An ambulance was called and he was rushed to the hospital.
The burns were too severe, so everyone gave up on him. No one had hope that he will survive. When his father saw him, he broke down in tears and said, “So, my son, you’re going to leave me at such a young age?”
When his sister saw him, she cried and said “No, this is not my brother, I want to see my brother”
But Qaphela replied and assured them, that he wasn’t going to die that he will live, and come back to play rugby.”
God heard his prayer and for his faith, he survived.
He went into Coma for 26 days but finally came back to life.
20 surgeries were carried out on him in an interval of four months and finally he regained himself.
The following year, 2017 he returned to school from the hospital but the scholarship was gone! The dream of Springboks faded away.
Even though he tried to give himself to rugby again, things were never the same anymore.
But to God be all the glory, he went back to playing rugby and in June 2017 he got another scholarship.
During one of his interviews, Qaphela said that his biggest mistake in life was learning too late that it is not every secret that is supposed to be shared with friends.
He’s now a motivational speaker and inspires other young people not to give up everything they’re going through.