Ramaroson calls for continuity as Rwanda all-girls camp gets underway
KIGALI (Rwanda) - FIBA Africa, in efforts to continue its development initiative in the continent, is hosting an all-girls Regional Youth Camp (U16) in Kigali, Rwanda.
The camp, bringing together 45 young girls from 15 countries was opened on 26 September and runs until 28 September.
The camp follows similar successful events in 2021 and 2022, but this year, the continental governing body has organised separate camps for boys and girls.
The boys' event was held from 20 to 22 September in Bamako, Mali.
Speaking after gracing the opening ceremony, the president of FIBA Africa Development Council Jean Michel Ramaroson called on national federations and zonal leadership to ensure continuity by engaging more youth in such camps and ensuring they compete in the FIBA youth tournaments.
“This camp is all about the development of talent and sharing experiences amongst coaches that we have spotted from different countries."
With experts from FIBA Africa and NBA, we are championing skill development, with the right experts, to help us elevate the levels of African basketball to match the other continents.
Jean Michel Ramaroson
We only have three days with the players and coaches and, obviously, that is not enough to nurture the kind of players we envision but they will get the most important skills that will shape their future," Ramaroson told FIBA.basketball.
The president of the Development Council has called on coaches and federations that are lucky to be part of these camps to pass down the knowledge and experience gained to their respective federations and zones as this would help improve the levels of basketball in the continent.
Coach Joe Touomou addresses the campers
"We expect the coaches invited for the camps to share the experience. Additionally, we are building the African national federations’ capacity to organize such camps as these are crucial tools to develop talent in a short span and it needs one to have the means, experience and knowledge, among other things, to set up," the president continued.
Ramaroson has underscored the importance of continuity after the three-day training, calling on all stakeholders to rally behind the youth in an effort to uplift basketball in the continent.
"Follow up is key. Even as we train these players, we emphasize that we want to see them in a year or two doing well in our youth competitions and, few years down the line, in their respective countries' senior teams.
We are also encouraging them to aim for higher leagues like the WNBA. We have our representatives in the zones and we are using these avenues to ensure proper follow-up of these talents on display," he added.
The camp has 15 coaches using their expertise to advance FIBA Africa's mission of identifying and developing the best young African basketball players; working on the technical aspects of the sport.
Dribbling plays a significant part in basketball fundamentals
The camp is also focusing on the youngsters' leadership abilities as organisers look to prepare the youth to become great players in the continent and beyond while leaving a positive impact on the environment.
In the inaugural edition of the Youth Camps, 35 countries were invited with 45 girls and 90 boys participating in the three camps held in Nairobi, Kenya, Saly, Senegal and Abidjan, Cote D'Ivoire.
The second edition assumed a similar format as the first, where the boys' and girls' camps run concurrently in one venue. 60 players per gender were involved from 35 invited countries. The Youth players gathered in Tana, Madagascar, Saly, Senegal and Casablanca, Morocco.