By Fiona Mpofu
Bulawayo: Team spirit was obviously in the air judging from all the cheering and screaming that could be heard coming from the Girls college basketball court.
This was at the annual Lead camp for young women who were shouting out their team members’ names to draw their attention and get them to pass on the ball.
It is at this camp where girls attain the skills of the sport that was once very male dominated.
This is where the girls skills are nurtured and where learn new skills related to the game as well as gain access to other life-skills and future opportunities.
“We look across the country for the best basketball prospects and we put them in a camp every year, to just nature not only the basketball talent but to teach them life skills and just give them information that they might not be able to get access to and just to give to give them a space to express themselves through sport,” said Belia Zibowa Lead camp 2019 Director.
The camp has become an empowerment ground for the girl-child as the few selected are exposed to information related to sports, life-skills and study opportunities abroad.
Various speakers from tertiary institutions and colleges offering scholarships were also present to mentor the girls and guide them on how to develop Curriculum Vitaes to help boost their chances of being awarded scholarships.
Zibowa said the camp was also a good space for the under 17 basketball girls from across Zimbabwe to meet coaches from overseas and to establish connections for the future.
In 2018 the camp saw one of its beneficiaries, Kriste Mambo finish second at the basketball nationals. An additional two girls who had attended the camp were also selected to be part a leadership programme in the United States of America.
Lilly, a form 3 student from St Johns Emerald Hill in Harare said the camp has helped boost her confidence in playing the sport.
Ayanda Bathabile Tshuma, from Mtshabezi High School said, “The camp is interesting and I have learnt a lot of different skills, different drills,”