Camps International believes that sports contribute to the social and emotional benefit of an individual, such as weight control, problem solving, self-esteem, social competence, a source of employment and academic accomplishment. Over the past 3 weeks our group of the Sports Development Expedition (SDX) has been working solidly and along with our local staff in Tsavo, managed to nurture and develop sports talent of over 150 students and youth in Sasenyi primary school and its environs. This is what the team had to share……      

During the time spent coaching the classes in football, netball, and volleyball, we were able to recognize the most talented students for each respective sport.

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After a few days, having observed the abilities of each individual, we began to note down potential names for the tournament day which would be our final day at Sasenyi School, which would also involve a fun run for every class.

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Boys Netball practice

Once we decided upon the best players for the tournaments, it was a matter of organizing the personnel into teams and deciding which players were best suited for certain positions.

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Football team selection

When we came to an agreement, it was time for the tournament day to commence.

The day turned out to be a considerable success. The day started with the fun run for each class, and then the attention focused towards the girl’s netball match between Sasenyi and Marungu School which took place before lunch.

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Netball girls tournament

In the afternoon, the football and volleyball matches for the boys and girls commenced. The action was thrilling, and supported enthusiastically from the sidelines. Across each sport, the standard was very high, and each contest between Sasenyi and Marungu School was generally very competitive with the girls football match concluding in a penalty shootout,

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Football tournament

Whilst it took a last minute goal to separate the teams in the boys match.  In each discipline it was clear to see the progress made by the students who performed well as individuals, but more importantly as a team.

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The scenes of celebration and emotion at the end of the day was fitting as it showed how much passion had been invested into the program, and how it had illuminated the spirit of the community.

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Moment of cheering!

At the end of the tournament, there was a short ceremony in which we awarded certificates to the members of the program who we felt had impressed us most throughout the expedition, as well as trophies to the winning teams.

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We also took the opportunity to donate equipment and kit to the school, as well as bags and stationary as a way of supporting the school’s overall development.

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In order to gain an insight into the program’s impact on the local community I talked to Stanley Mwale, the deputy head teacher at the Sasenyi School.

He described the field’s former state at the school to that of a ‘garden’ yet now with the benefit of having better facilities, he said there will be more ‘motivation for teachers’ to coach sports.

‘Talents will be built here’ he said, and with the coaching of games being ‘taken more seriously’ as part of the school curriculum, the opportunities for developing sportsmen and women can only improve.

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Best player in boys football awarded

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Best player in girls awarded

Through the development of sports in the community’s less affluent areas, there are more possibilities for young people to partake in sport at a higher level, regardless of geography.

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Moments of  team Celebration

This can only improve the overall progression of sport on a wider scale in the country.

As a group of coaches which include, me, Henry, as well as Antonio, Esme, James, Laura, Adam, Nicole, Jake, Lucy, Daryl, Emily, and Daniel,

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Sports Development Expedition Team 2016

We are very proud to see the effect of sports development within the areas we have worked, and hope that the development of sport in Kenya continues long into the future.

Blog written by Henry Flynn- SDX 2016