It’s not often young people readily talk about the benefits of a sports programme. However a group of youngsters are quick to say they appreciate local basketball’s core youth initiative.
One of those kids is David Powery, 17. The son of Calron and Delia Powery is one of dozens of children involved in the King’s youth basketball programme.
Put on by the Cayman Islands Basketball Association, the endeavour is headed up by national men’s coach Daniel Augustine and national women’s coach/technical director for basketball Victor ‘Voot’ O’Garro.
Recently the programme put on a car wash as a way to raise funds for a July trip to Tampa. This summer the kids are slated to take part in a youth development camp to increase their basketball skills.
Getting better at basketball is something Powery is familiar with.
The year 11 Wesleyan Christian Academy student has been in the sport (and conversely the King’s programme) the last six years and has taken part in the Under-15,-16 and -19 leagues on island. As Powery states his focus is on climbing the ranks.
“With the car wash I wanted to come out and support basketball and help others better themselves,” Powery said. “The King’s programme is one step forward for youth basketball in Cayman. Like everybody else, we in the programme want to go out on the court and get better. “Personally, basketball has been my sport since I was 11. I enjoy the programme because we have two of the best coaches on the island in Daniel and Voot. They have taught us a lot of good fundamentals. I hope this continues for many years so that one day my children can come and learn from this.”
Another youngster in the programme is Melissa Bridgemohan, 13. The year eight John Gray High School student hails from West Bay and is the daughter of Maxine Scott. Bridgemohan states being in the Kings programme the last three years has given her a chance to grow her love for basketball. “The programme makes me want to come out and get involved in competitions like the U16 league,” Bridgemohan said. “We see our strengths and I feel encouraged to do good in school. I want to be a paediatrician but I’ve really come to be into sports as I also play netball. I really love basketball now and I would like to represent Cayman in it one day.”