St. John’s Antigua - Scotiabank and West Indies Cricket Board’s (WICB) love for the game of cricket was further strengthened by the bank’s donation of ‘Kiddy Cricket’ equipment to ensure that the West Indies cricket legacy lives on.
An astonishing 45,000 children from 1,500 primary schools all across the Caribbean are now equipped to play cricket through the donation of 1,500 Kiddy Cricket Kits funded by Scotiabank.
These include bats, balls, stumps and other coaching aids that were custom made for children ages five through 11.
Theses kits were distributed to the schools for the academic year 2011/2012 as part of a revamping programme.
Apart from the new kits, participating students in the Kiddy Cricket display have also received 1,700 newly designed uniforms which include Kiddy Cricket T-shirts and pants which will be showcased in the host country during the annual Digicel Series held in the Caribbean.
In the stunning white and red gear, the branded uniform and bright yellow kits form a colourful, annual attraction on the fields during the lunch breaks of international matches as the students demonstrate their cricketing skills and share the big stage with many of their heroes.
Scotiabank and WICB have also provided technical coaching staff in over 14 territories across the region to train students in the fundamentals of batting, bowling, fielding and wicketkeeping.
The coaching personnel have expanded annually to meet the needs of the ever-growing Kiddy Cricket Programme.
Over the past two years, coaching workshops have been ongoing and geared towards equipping PE teachers and volunteers with recreational level cricket coaching skills which has widened the programme’s coaching scope at the primary school level.
Thus far, Jamaica, Montserrat, Antigua & Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Trinidad and Tobago, St Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines have benefitted from the programme.
As a result, more coaching workshops are scheduled to be staged shortly in Barbados, Guyana, the US and British Virgin Islands and Anguilla.
Scotiabank’s Regional Sponsorship Manager Simone Hull said cricket has long been described as being an expensive sport requiring several different pieces of equipment along with the appropriate gear and technical staff to properly teach the game.
Hull said these items could be very expensive and prohibit many keen youngsters and their schools from playing. Hull said Scotiabank wants to ensure that the legacy of West Indies cricket is passed on to the next generation so that they are well-equipped to play the sport.
This story was taken from the Antigua Observer Newspaper.