Kennedy hopes Madawaska camp will improve local girls

Youth volleyball in the Cayman Islands hopes to improve after a Canadian camp.

The Cayman Islands Volleyball Federation is sending 12 kids, 10 of them are girls, to a junior volleyball camp in Madawaska. Located in Ontario, Canada, the clinic takes place from Saturday, 25 August, to 2 September.

Federation vice president Kennedy McGowan states Cayman’s participation in the camp comes after recent fundraising.

“For Madawaska, they were engaging in physical training to help prepare for conditions at the camp,” McGowan said. “The federation held fundraisers like Take a Kid to Golf and those fundraising efforts have had excellent support from corporate sponsors. We recently had a youth camp with Juan Cartagena and the proceeds helped the youth programme and preparations for the Madawaska camp.

“Our kids have been training the past year. Most of them are playing in the national league at Camana Bay. They’re getting valuable playing experience. It’s part of many initiatives like the University College of the Cayman Islands hosting the world indoor male qualifiers in October.”

The camp is in its 40th year, having served Canadian and US players since 1972. It started out as a developmental session, organised by the Ontario Volleyball Association, to produce elite players.

It is now a mix of beginner and advanced players, catering to boys and girls aged 12-18. These days, the camp accepts a maximum of 525 youngsters from locales like Australia, Venezuela and England.

News of the Madawaska camp comes after the federation hosted a clinic at Camana Bay’s Arts and Recreation Centre. The clinic targeted kids aged 10-18, attracting talents like Chante Smith-Johnson.

The clinic hosted Cartagena, a North, Central America and Caribbean Volleyball Confederation instructor. It was the Puerto Rican’s second time in Cayman, after coming here in February to teach youngsters at the university college.