Basketball Fiji’s Hoops For Health programme has attracted a multitude of volunteer coaches and participants over the years, one of them is Rosy Bidesi, a teacher at the Latter Day Saints Primary School in Suva.

Basketball Fiji partnered with the LDS
Primary School to run their Hoops for Health programme which focuses on
teaching the basics of basketball and includes a component of health messaging.

Bidesi, a Class four teacher witnessed
the excitement of her students during the session.

“I am a teacher and HOD for the upper
classes at LDS Primary School and the students in class four were the ones
taking the basketball clinics with the coaches,” Bidesi said.

“I normally supervise during these
basketball sessions and have seen the joy and happiness of the students during
their time with the coaches.”

The 39-year-old teacher shared the
positive impact of the program and the effect of the health messaging on her

“I have seen the great messages behind
the basketball drills that the coaches teach, especially the tips they give on
healthy living and how our kids can be more engaged in the classroom if they
are eating the right foods and having enough rest,” she said.

“I have kids who are in class five this
year but they still remind me to keep healthy and exercise regularly so I won’t
catch NCD’s and this is what they learned when they were a part of the
basketball session last year.”

Despite her lack of experience with the
sport, Bidesi has been converted to a basketball supporter because of the
program’s effect on her students.

“As a teacher, I believe in the positive
impact basketball has on students and if their bodies are in the right healthy
state their academic results will improve,” she said.

“I am always asking the coaches on when
there will be a primary school competition for basketball as I believe our kids
here at LDS Primary school will do great. I and my children love the sport of
basketball even though we haven’t played it before.

Basketball Fiji’s National Basketball
Development Officer, Kenneth Taliu shared that despite the overwhelming
popularity of rugby in the country, each Hoops for Health session has yielded
positive reception with the students they teach.

“Basketball is not the most popular
sport in the country but with the help of teachers like Rosy and schools like
the LDS, we are gaining momentum. Basketball is fun and we believe it’s a good
tool to use to help spread social awareness especially health,” Taliu said.

Rosy Bidesi Picture: SUPPLIED

Meanwhile, Bidesi explains the
significance and critical part of the sport as a positive development to
students in terms of their health and well being.

“This story shows that sport can be used
as an influence for good, especially in our lifestyles. The healthier we are
the more chances of performing well in the classroom,” she said.

The Basketball For Good (B4G) strategy
uses sports as a social awareness program. B4G is a program is supported by the
Australian Aid and FIBA’s Foundation, the International Basketball Foundation.


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