New CIVF Volleyball League tied to Youth Development
GRAND CAYMAN, Cayman Islands - The Cayman Islands Volleyball Federation (CIVF) is now accepting player registrations for its new Volleyball Community Beach League. This first-ever competition will be annual and include both Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac. “We have very high hopes for this league to serve as an introduction to volleyball for local families and youth players,” said Tammy Kelderman, CIVF board member. “First and foremost, this will be a fun-oriented competition. We want all ages to participate. People who have never played before and veteran players are all welcome.”
The Community Beach League is aiming for much more than just fun and games. “We designed this league as a way to reach out to the communities of Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac. It will also serve as a scouting event where we can identify U-18 players we would like to invite to join CIVF’s new Junior Elite programme, explained Kennedy McGowan, CIVF President. The Junior Elite programme will serve as a pipeline for Cayman’s indoor and beach volleyball national teams. We also plan to use this league to help launch our educational outreach initiative. We will tie it to the development of our effort to get more Caymanian kids interested in STEM subjects. CIVF sees volleyball as a powerful means of reaching our youth and helping them,” said Mr. McGowan.
Toward that end, CIVF has tapped Anjia Delapenha, 16, as its new Youth Ambassador. She has been in the youth indoor and beach volleyball programmes for several years and is excited to work with other young players. “Volleyball is a great sport,” said Delapenha. “It’s fun, it’s challenging and just about anyone can play. I’m honoured to represent CIVF and the sport in Cayman. I look forward to not only promoting volleyball but also helping CIVF make important contributions to our country’s youth.”
For diversity and parity, each four-player team in the Volleyball Community Beach League is required to have at least one under-18 player and one female player on the court at all times. All-youth teams and all-female teams are acceptable. To make the competition easier for players who are new to the sport, the format will be 4 vs 4 and there will be three divisions based on skill level with champions crowned in each.
Any player who registers may also participate in two weekends of free beach volleyball clinics prior to the start of the competition in May. The two-day clinics will be held on Grand Cayman (17-18 April, Seven Mile Public Beach) and Cayman Brac (24 April, Layman E. Scott High School; 25 April, Brac Reef Resort). “The clinics offer a chance for players to learn and develop the fundamentals of the sport,” said Marcus Patterson, CIVF board member responsible for youth development. “Young or old, no one should be shy about coming out. The clinics will be tailored to the ability of participants, so everyone will learn and feel comfortable.”
Teams can register a maximum of eight players, to allow for substitutions, and will pay a registration fee of $90 per team. The first matches are scheduled for Sunday, 2 May. After five qualifying rounds, the championship will be held Sunday, 6 June. At the end of each of the five qualifier weekends, divisional winners qualify for the 6 June, League championship. Registered teams can play in as many of the qualifier tournaments as they would like. To increase their chances to be identified for the Junior Elite programme, under-18 players are encouraged to play as many of the qualifiers as possible. CIVF encourages families, businesses, schools, not-for-profit organizations, government departments, churches, and other groups to form teams.
For more information about the Volleyball Community Beach League, Junior Elite Programme, CIVF or its plans for