The Ministry of Youth, Sports, and Religious Affairs, in collaboration with the Grenada Netball Association, conducted a highly successful National Netball Symposium on Friday, 19 December, at the Grenada National Stadium.
The symposium was an initiative by the Minister for Youth, Sports, and Religious Affairs, Hon. Emmalin Pierre. It began the process to chart the way forward and concretize future developments for the sport.
Accompanying the Minister was Assistant Coordinator of Sports, Bruce Swan, President of the Grenada Netball Association, Janice Charles, and the facilitator of the netball symposium Ian Blanchard.
“I believe where we are is really a takeoff point and I have sensed a passion for the sport,” said the Minister. “We cannot continue individually and that is why I think today is so important if we do not have a consorted and collective approach to this, we are going to fail. The Ministry will fail, the Association will fail, and our individual effort will also fail.”
Minister Pierre believes that Grenada has what it takes to shine in the sport of netball. She stated her expectation resulting from the symposium which is to discuss the process of getting netball from its current state to where it is envisioned to be. This will materialize through meaningful dialogue and the galvanizing by the Grenada Netball Association and its stakeholders for the 2015 season and beyond.
“The foundation is you,” said Blanchard. “The fundamental of the activity is about how you are as people and what is the mindset that is necessary [and] to create the success that is necessary for netball.”
Participants were engaged in healthy discussions covering all aspects of netball. Among the areas discussed throughout the discourse were the sourcing of scholarships, introducing the Fast–5 format of netball to Grenada, infrastructural development and exclusivity of netball courts, introducing primary school competitions, developing grassroots and talent identification programs, increasing the national team’s participation in regional and international tournaments, creating a Government policy for netball, and developing a marketing strategy which will eventually lead Grenada’s netball to become a global brand.
The Grenada Netball Association also announced that it will hold its election in January 2015.