Shoot to Inspire, a basketball camp organized by a grade 12 student from the Steinbach Regional Secondary School, was a big success.
Peyton Kehler says she organized the Shoot to Inspire camp for girls grades 7 through 10 with a focus on fundamentals so that they can be competitive in high school basketball.
“I started in November, planning my own basketball camp to tackle the issue that girls are dropping out of sport at a super early age, especially in comparison to the guys. It could be due to opportunity, just the fact that there is nothing local for young girls, you have to go to the city and that's not always financially possible for some families.”
Kehler says the Shoot to Inspire camp ran on January 20th and 21st at the SRSS and they were blown away with how well the campers connected.
“It went super, super well. We had 23 campers signed up and we left as a tight-knit family. We had snacks and mealtimes that at first looked like the different schools, the girls that knew each other would sit together, but at the end of the camp, we're all sitting at one table eating lunch together.”
Not only is it important to know the people on your own team, but Kehler says getting to know those that you face in competition is really beneficial noting “being able to play against someone you went to a camp with, it just strengthens that community.”
Kehler says she put a lot of effort in planning the camp, but fortunately, she had help.
“I had 15 volunteers by my side, split between the two days. We did drills and stuff to start the day to build fundamental skills with lots more practical stuff in the afternoon and more playing. We had time both days to have a speaker so on the first day we had a panel different speakers to show what sport looks like in their life outside of basketball.”
Then on the second days, Kehler says “we had a speaker from Toronto, her name is Tash and she’s a friend. She roped me into her nonprofit to help her out over zoom for the last year and a bit, so this time she wanted to come see the prairies and try it out.”
All in all, Kehler says the success of the Shoot to Inspire basketball camp was very encouraging. She notes organizing the basketball camp was part of a school project, but it was so good that she says "Shoot to Inspire Season 2 is in the works.” She adds “we'll see when it comes, but we're hoping we're hoping for a nice summer camp.”