TANOLIU - Environmental issues and basketball are not usually topics used together but the Vanuatu Association of Sports and National Olympic Committee (VASANOC) have organised a sports outreach program to teach students more about sports and the environment.
The Vanuatu Basketball Federation (VBF) joined VASANOC's program to help push environmental awareness and sports exposure.
"Putting waste in the right place, especially plastics is very important so they do not rot away, using local baskets to carry shopping or use a reusable one helps preserve the environment," said VBF Hoops for Health (H4H) Coordinator, Annie Obed.
Following the environmental messaging, it was time to get out and active. The students were split into teams of five and rotated around the stations and learnt to play seven sports in one hour.
"For basketball, we did ball handling as part of our Hoops for Health awareness, so we played two games, Fruit tunnel and Tap relay," explained Obed.
"Fruit tunnel is a game where the basketball is being passed over and under to the next person behind. Two markers are set out on the field to mark the end where the kids will stop. The kids are divided into two groups and then compete against each other, if one team reaches the cone first, they are the winners and they are the ones that win the healthy food or snacks.
"Tap relay is where two players compete against each other while tapping the ball and running to the marker and back set out by the coach, they then pass the ball to the person next in line."
The students were having so much fun that Obed and VBF National Basketball Development Officer (NBDO) Kevin Roslyn couldn't help themselves and had to join in.
"The kids were really enjoying both games so Kevin and I joined in on the fun to make the teams even," said Obed.
"I feel so good while teaching the children new skills, it is wonderful to them have fun learning to play basketball," commented Roslyn.
The VBF's H4H program is seeing continual growth and is always looking to expand into new areas.
"This was an opportunity for us to continue to promote the sport of basketball amongst school children that live outside of the main parts of town and we are heavily grateful for that," added Obed.