Despite some very trying economic circumstances some exciting and promising sporting developments are taking place in St Vincent and the Grenadines that promise to augur well for the future.
The critics have been able to have much to chastise sporting organisations for over the past several months but there are some things happening that must be accorded due credit for the potential that is being revealed.
Grassroots Talent Identification Programme
For the past four years the National Olympic Committee (NOC) has engaged in the establishment of the Grassroots Talent Identification Programme (GTIP). This programme allows each national sport association involved to prepare appropriate coaching strategies to introduce Vincentian children to their respective sporting disciplines.
Initially the concept proved a major challenge as some associations were not appropriately structured to engage in the programme while others simply did not see the long-term development potential that could be realised through participation.
Happily, things have changed and we now have Athletics, Basketball, Boxing, Cycling, Table Tennis, Taekwondo, Tennis and Volleyball all involved.
Importantly, children can participate in as many sporting disciplines as they wish simply by attending the respective sessions when they come to their respective areas of residence.
Of course, in the recent past Football has begun its own Academy Programme.
The use of Saturday mornings by the associations involved to engage children across St Vincent and the Grenadines in sport is an amazing proposition and we should all encourage this development.
We have always addressed the issue of the negative options now available to today’s children and sport is easily the most important weapon to adequately redress this tendency.