Island Cricket Mamas going through medical screening during their first combined activity to celebrate sport for development day

The Vanuatu Cricket Association (VCA) has been bringing cricket to women and children in communities around Efate with the support and funding from the Australian Government through the Pacific Sports Partnership (PSP) program.

The Women’s Island Cricket program is funded by PSP and it targets women and mothers in communities and provides them with an option to improve their fitness and health through playing Island Cricket.

VCA women’s cricket supervisor, Amelia Lawac, explained that the program does not only involve playing island cricket but it also provides nutritional programs, women’s health clinics and combined activities where mothers learn how to be self-sufficient.

“We understand that NCD’s are a big concern in our communities and it is our goal to help reduce NCD’s by providing health programs through our cricket activities. We are working together with the Vanuatu Family Health Association to provide awareness on different health issues especially in women’s health and we help them monitor their blood pressure, blood sugar, weight loss, weight gain and we provide them with nutritional lessons which helps them with maintaining a balanced diet for themselves and their families,” said Lawac.

“Along with all the programs we run for individual communities, we also run combine activities to give mothers from the communities a chance to meet each other, share experiences, socialize and support each other.”

Lawac confirmed that they have had two combined activities so far this year with the first one in support of the Sport for Development day and the second one to help raise funds for the mothers from Mele and they are looking forward to the third one that is scheduled for Friday the 29th of June.

In addition to the Women’s Island Cricket Program, VCA’s female development officers have been bringing cricket to children in communities with a School Holiday Program being the most recent.

The holiday program was also funded through PSP and it was ran in three different communities namely Erakor, Beverly Hills and Ifira with a total of 93 participants across these communities.

This holiday program allowed children to participate in cricket outside of school especially those who do not have the opportunity to experience cricket in school. A variation of modified cricket activities and games are the highlights of the program which spanned for a week and each activity allowed children to have fun but at the same time learn basic bat and ball handling skills and fielding techniques.

These programs have been made possible through funding from the Australian Government through PSP and Vanuatu Cricket would like to confirm that these programs will continue to happen with a scheduled combined Island Cricket activity on Friday the 29th of June and another school holiday program in the next school holidays in August.

Raymond Nasse

Sports Editor

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