Twilight Basketball a huge success

A record number of 476 people went to the Taurama Indoor Aquatic Centre (TAIC) last Friday night to take part in the Basketball Federation of Papua New Guinea’s (BFPNG) final Twilight Basketball session for this year.

The BFPNG Hoops for Health (H4H) initiative has been running every Friday evening for the past six-weeks.

During that time, more than 2000 players have participated in the free 3x3 and 5v5 Basketball games.

While the program focuses on fitness and fun on-court, BFPNG also teamed up with local organizations to help promote education around important community issues.

Last Friday night the International Organization for Migration delivered a workshop.

Previous sessions have seen groups including the Youth Blood Drive, Child Fund Hotline and Papua New Guinea Cancer Foundation deliver messages on their respective programs.

BFPNG Chief Executive Officer, Joel Khalu said it was much more than just promoting basketball.

“It is about utilizing the sport to make a positive impact on the community.”

“Not only do we have hundreds of people improving their well-being by exercising every Friday night, we’re also creating a diversion for those that may be thinking about engaging in anti-social behavior during that time.

“For those four-hours we’re creating an avenue for kids to get off the streets and into

a positive environment, where they can play sport for free and get educated on various ways to live happier and healthier lives.”

“We’ve seen many benefits come out of the program in such a short period and the feedback received from players has been overwhelming. Based on that we’re already looking forward to running our next Twilight Basketball program in 2017,” said Khalu.

The BFPNG Twilight Basketball program is a H4H initiative made possible through the support of FIBA, the International Basketball Foundation (IBF) and funding through the Australian Government’s Pacific Sports Partnership program.

Troy Taule