(Published in The Anguillian newspaper)
ANGUILLA -- The annual Joe Farroba Basketball Camp in Anguilla is held every year in August. This year the dates are 14th – 18th August from 8:30 am – 12 noon each day. It is open to boys and girls who want to learn and practice the fundamental skills of basketball in a fun atmosphere.
The annual Joe Farroba Basketball Camp is hosted by the Anguilla Department of Sports and directed by Coach Farroba and his team of basketball coaches, from Anguilla and the US, who all have experience with coaching youth of varying ages. This article provides the story behind this successful summer camp, now in its 6th consecutive year.
The camp is the brainchild of Coach Joe Farroba and became possible in the spring of 2010 with the help of Mr. Mark Silva and Mr. Ben Perez for housing, and discussions with Mr. Louis Price at the JC Recreational Centre. Next came contact with Mr. Rollins Richardson and Mr. Delano Mussington of the Anguilla Department of Sport to bring the youth of Anguilla to the camp.
Initially, housing for the coaches came from Mr. Silva and Mr. Perez which covered one of the major expenses the coaches would have. Coach Joe Farroba donated six baskets and basketballs and T-shirts and with the JC Recreational Centre providing administrative support from Director Ms. Jaine Rogers and Mr. Price providing the only covered sport-court on the island free of charge, the camp was on its way in August 2012.
For the first three years the coaches covered their food, travel, gas, fees for leaving the island during their stay in Anguilla. Now the camp is a true collaboration between its partners. With the help of Mr. Richardson, Mr. Mussington and Department of Sport, housing, some meals, departure tax and car rental (with the coaches covering their gas usage) have been provided by the Government of Anguilla.
The staff over the last six years who donate their time have been Coach Farroba, Don Byron, Brian Ferris, Dave Barrett, Rose Barrett, Delano Mussington, Ian “Tucker” Connor and Lisimba Price. Others who have contributed their time are Mike Byron, Cuthbert Jackson, Randy Webster, Jack Barrett and Kevin Barrett.
Generously, Mr. Barrett provides housing for Rose, Jack, and Kevin when they work the camp. Mr. Price has also helped with providing meals for the coaches during their stay.
The inclusive and team-building nature of the camp allows youth from different villages across Anguilla to interact with each other in a positive setting. The youth are very grateful that the coaches give their free time to come to Anguilla and teach them new basketball skills. In addition the youth benefit from daily motivational talks from Coach Farroba and visiting sports stars such as Anguilla’s own Omari Banks. Well over 400 children and youth have attended the camp with an average of 72 youth per year. The number is limited so that the coaches can provide quality instruction with an 8:1 coach ratio.
This year the camp, will be from 14th – 18th August 2017 at the JC Recreational Centre in South Hill from 8:30 am – 12 noon each day for youth aged between 8 – 17 years. The cost is still only US$20. Each participant gets a T-shirt at the end of the week. Snacks will be on sale. Please bring water and running shoes.
Coach Farroba has 40-plus years of basketball coaching experience and has also run a coaches clinic and an officiating clinic in collaboration with the Department of Sports and the Anguilla Amateur Basketball Association (AABA). Coach Farroba has provided well over $10,000.00 US of his own money donating baskets, basketballs, T-shirts, water bottles and sports shoes that the youth of Anguilla have benefited from. It is his pleasure to visit Anguilla and enjoy the people he has met and the lifelong friendships that are being developed.
Any persons wishing to become a partner of the Annual Joe Farroba Basketball camp and/ or make a contribution to the 6th Annual Camp through financial donations, or sponsorship of meals or travel expenses for the coaches can contact: Coach Joe Farroba email@example.com; Department of Sports: Delano Mussington firstname.lastname@example.org / 264 497 5214; or JC Recreational Centre: Jaine Price email@example.com / 264 497 3962.