“Mentoring basketball program that any community can implement”
For those that know me personally, I am involved with coaching disadvantaged kids basketball. It’s a great way of teaching the game I love to kids that need some social interaction with a positive male in their life.
Over the last 3 years in the program it is evident that teenage males without a positive male role model in their lives turn to anti social behaviour. Things like being disruptive in class to committing crimes.
In the 3 years we have been operating this mentoring program I can say the improvements in the kids have been remarkable. The kids are participating in school sport, attendance in class has gone up, they have become more socially confident and stayed clear from criminal activities. In all, very positive!
What is mentoring
The charity group I work with define mentoring as:
“Mentoring is simply about having fun and forming a friendship. It can be a simple as walking the dog or baking a batch of cookies. Time spent each week with a young person will help them develop their self-esteem, learn life skills and have fun! Interested in volunteering in our one-to-one mentoring programs?”
I like to think of mentoring as being a cool older brother to a group of teenagers. Having had basketball experience at a high level is a bonus. After all these kids start to look up to you especially if you are a legitimate basketball player.
With this respect that the kids have I find it really easy to teach/ coach them not only basketball but also give them advice on situations from their personal life. I remember talking to one of the kids I worked with about a crush at school he has. We do our best to help where we can.
How the mentoring program started
The basketball mentoring program started in 2014 in Melbourne by TRY mentoring group. TRY got 3 people together to run a basketball-mentoring program, which was the first ever in Victoria; working with autistic, sexually assaulted and low socioeconomic background teen males.
The three mentors were: Greg (semi professional basketball coach), Me and Martin (personal trainer). All three came together to run the program successfully which is still running in Melbourne to this day.
The basketball mentoring program
The basketball mentoring program that I run sees me work with teenagers, aged between 13 and 17. These kids come from three main categories; sexually assaulted, autistic or low socioeconomic backgrounds. To be apart of the program the kids have to sit within these three vertices to qualify.
They come once a week after school a local basketball stadium where we teach them the basics of basketball and team work. You see, with basketball or sports for that matter, there is a lot of transferable skills.
The sessions last for 90 minutes where we do shooting, skill work and finish off with a scrimmage. Not only is this program about basketball but we do try and lend a hand with advice with all things non basketball related.
It is very important that I point this out to you. THE PROGRAM IS TOTALLY FREE! No one makes money and the volunteers and organisers do not get a cent. Operating costs are absorbed by sponsors and the government. None of the attendees of the basketball mentoring program have to pay for anything.
How can you get involved basketball mentoring program
There’s two ways you can get involved, as a volunteer or someone that wants to start a program within a community.
Firstly let’s take a look at how you can get involved as a volunteer. The program is currently running in Melbourne and soon Sydney. So far we are at limited locations however it is important to note that we are growing this program. Best thing to do is drop me a message via the contact form and register your interest. I’m sure we’ll be able to place you somewhere.
Secondly, if you like the sound of this program and would like to implement the same thing in your community. Please reach out to me. I’d love to help! I can help with the organisation of the program including presentations to sponsors and councils. Drop me a message on the contact us form and we can schedule a phone call.
Basketball mentoring program, get involved and change somebody’s life forever!