Today’s blog is written by PPI – South Africa Life Skills Coordinator Ntobeko Ngcamu and Basketball Operations Manager Mtu Zulu, reporting from Umbumbulu.
PSP and LDP participants at the end of a successful clinic.
The Umbumbulu Leadership Development Program (LDP) team held an amazing coaching clinic for area Primary School Program (PSP) participants at Tobi primary school on the 23rd October. The Saturday morning was overcast as the coaches and staff members began the clinic at 11:00. Regardless of the weather promising rain, almost 40 area youth (representative of all four PPI-SA participating schools) gathered at the Tobi Primary School basketball court, ready to have the first ever PPI-SA Umbumbulu Primary School Basketball Clinic.
PPI-SA’s Leadership Development Program (LDP) team arrived on time to register the players and set up for the day’s activities. Once all 40 PSP players were registered, the LDP players reviewed the plan of the day and made sure everyone, players and staff members, were ready.
PSP participants line up for speed and agility drills.
The day started with a famous ice-breaker, lead by Basketball Operations Manager and LDP coach Mtu Zulu and helped by other Umbumbulu coaches, Life Skills Coordinator Ntobeko Ngcamu, and coaches Sihle and Qino. Kids formed lines on the court, kicking and opening side to side. Afterwards, Ntobeko welcomed the participants, before handing the program over to the LDP players to run the clinic activities.
Kids were divided into five groups of 10 and lined up on each sideline. We started with speed and agility drills and proceeded to teach ball handling, dribbling, passing, shooting. Each skill was demonstrated, practiced, then turned into a fun competition.
To close the event we had one LDP player, Phumla Makhanya, share her involvement with PPI-SA – what were her challenges and what she has achieved, and hopes to achieve, so far. Her parents originally did not want her to join or play basketball, the reason being she was a young girl doing grade 5 and not allowed to participate in any after school activities. She asked the school principal and other teachers to plead her case to the parents. Eventually she joined the team and was happy.
Qino, a local coach, with Phumla, an LDP player who would share her experiences with the children in attendance at the end of the event.
In grade 6, however, she broke her arm and stopped playing for the entire season. She rejoined the PPI-SA family the next year and from there, she says, “She never looked back.” Her achievements in basketball include playing spots on both the District and Provincial teams. She tells the kids she would not have achieved what she has without listening to her coach in life skills, and she continues to say that the life skills learned through PPI-SA help her to face high school challenges. ”I used the knowledge I gained in PPI-SA life skills to make informed decisions, especially when receiving peer pressure from my classmates.”
Her current goals include earning a spot on the SA National team, finishing matric (Grade 12) and attending the University of Cape Town to study Sport Management.
At the end of the day, the lessons learned by the coaches were many. They learned to plan and organize an event, and learned the importance of preparation and the value of crowd control, which proved a challenging task throughout the day. Lastly, the coaches learned the value of giving clear, precise instructions to the participants.
We hope to continue hosting clinics as a medium for our coaches and players to learn more facilitation techniques, and our players to learn more about the game of basketball!