Indigenous Community Basketball League Launched By IBA And Patty Mills
ndigenous Basketball Australia (IBA) has formed the Indigenous Community Basketball League (ICBL), an inaugural basketball competition, founded by Australian Boomers star, Patty Mills.
Mills, San Antonio Spurs player and 2014 NBA champion said he intends on offering pathways for the next generation of Indigenous youth.
Aimed at under 14’s, the competition will run across eight locations across the country, including the Torres-Strait Islands, with the first round to kick-off on February 7 and conclude March 28.
Mills said: “To continue my efforts as a leader for my people and to follow my family’s legacy of providing legitimate opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people through my sport of basketball is the true outcome of my personal success and accomplishments.”
“What we will do with the IBA programs and competitions has never been done before and is the first-of-its-kind in this country’s sporting environment.
“It’s game-changing and we’re creating history.
“As a starting point, we will begin with the age group of under 14.
“The early adolescence years are crucial for a child’s cognitive, emotional, and social development – our complementary programs throughout the competitions of IBA will support these kids and their communities in embracing their culture and unlocking ones full potential in an environment that is safe and free from any discrimination.
“We want to give them the best possible chance to succeed.
“As we grow, we will expand to more regions and more age groups,” he said.
ICBL locations include Darwin, Logan, Adelaide, Thursday Island, Alice Springs, Perth, Dubbo, and Cairns, with the primary focus being health, wellbeing, safety, culture, and education.
Community basketball competitions, national tournaments, and development camps are organised and run by the IBA to offer young indigenous people to preserve culture, and form their identities while improving their health and lifestyles.
Member of the NBL’s Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan, and Cairns Taipans star, Nate Jawai, said: “As a proud Torres Strait Islander, I am incredibly supportive of Indigenous Basketball Australia and the real opportunity it would bring to my people – both on and off the court.”
“The IBA model will see young players supported in a positive and safe environment to fulfill their dreams; equipping them with invaluable tools, skills, and experience to flourish and succeed.
“I strongly encourage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youths to sign up today to participate in the Indigenous Community Basketball League and the innovative IBA programs.
“Personally, I am looking forward to seeing the talent of tomorrow emerge and sharing the same court as them one day,” he said.
‘Inspirational and Motivational Sessions’ will also complement weekly sessions, and every player competing in the ICBL will automatically be in the running to represent their region and proudly support their state colours during the National Indigenous Basketball Tournament on Queensland’s Gold Coast in April of 2021.