This week we continue our Introducing our Coaches Series. Over the last few years PeacePlayers International – South Africa has consistently had a shortage in coaches in Umlazi. Given it is Durban’s largest township and is home to four PPI Primary Schools recruiting new coaches was a heavy focus for PPI Office staff entering this year. Today’s blog is written by one of our first year coaches in Umlazi, Lindokuhle (Lindo) Tenza.
What school did you coach: Sekelani Primary School
How long have you been playing basketball?
I have been playing for seven years. I started playing as a PeacePlayers Participant at St. Leo Primary School in Molweni. I then went on to play in the LDP (Leadership Development Programme) throughout Secondary school before moving to Umlazi to go to college.
How did you hear about the coaching job?
I am here because PeacePlayers is like my second home, I grew up with PeacePlayers and being a coach here is like a dream come true. I love coaching and hanging out with kids and helping were I can because it shows that I can be a good role model to my kids and fellow coaches. I like to help anybody if I can especially the kids I am coaching. I really focus on building relationships with my players so they look at me as more than just a coach but a friend, so they can ask or talk about anything with me, even something that does not include basketball.
How has your experience as a coach been so far?
It has been very good! My experience made me gain confidence about myself both as a coach and even in personal life. I am loving it so far because of PeacePlayers not only gave me the chance, but is teaching me how to become a better coach, player and person. They have made it easy for me, and I’ve you must be persistent when dealing with kids but also in life.
What is your favourite moment as a coach thus far?
My favourite moments have been with every single child I coach. I believe I have connected with each of my kids. Many of them stay in my neighbourhood so the walks back home are my favourite. The kids really open up and we get to laugh and joke outside the court. I believe they see me more than just their coach but rather their role model.
Name three things that you have learned?
1 As a coach you must be a good role model for the kids.
2 Never be afraid to be yourself with the kids; for me this means opening up to the kids after practice when we walk home about choosing the right friends or having dreams using my life as an example.
3 To treat kids with respect, no matter who they are and where they come from