Photo: National Olympic Committee of BurundiEast Africa JTI Workshop - Mike Barrell (GBR) demonstration to coaches
The first Junior Tennis Initiative (JTI) workshop, specifically organised for national JTI Coordinators, was held at the Tanganyika Blue Bay Resort, Burundi on 7-10 October. A total of 28 coaches representing seven nations from the East African region were in attendance.
The workshop was the first of six to be coordinated by the ITF in key regions around the world. The purpose of the workshop was to further educate the National JTI Coordinators and the coaches supporting their national JTI programme, building the knowledge base of specific aspects of tennis development and raising the quality of the delivery to increase the number of players playing tennis in their respective nations.
The workshop was funded through the International Olympic Committee’s Olympic Solidarity Commission funding programme, and supported by the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Burundi and by the Burundi National Tennis Federation.
The ITF would like to thank the Tanganyika Blue Bay Resort for their generosity and for hosting the four-day workshop, which was delivered by ITF experts Mike Barrell (GBR), Tim Jones (GBR), Francis Thuku (KEN) and ITF Development Officer for East Africa Thierry Ntwali (RWA).
On the success of the workshop, Thierry Ntwali said, “This has been a wonderful workshop, for the national coordinators and for the coaches managing Tennis10s in their country. The attendance from the nations in the East Africa region has been very positive and we hope that what they have learnt can be used effectively to develop their 14-and-under programmes.”
Kiango Kipingu, National JTI Coordinator in Tanzania said, “The four days has given a lot of value for all the coordinators and coaches and will help make our jobs easier. We have shared many experiences, the challenges and the successes of our programmes with each other. I hope that we can all continue to work together for the benefit of tennis development in the region.”
The JTI is a 14-and-under junior development programme funded by the ITF, which forms the foundation of a National Association’s player development pathway in ITF member nations. The programme is overseen by the National Tennis Association and provides opportunities for increased participation in tennis, as well as identifying the most talented players for focused player development. The JTI incorporates four key elements, Tennis10s development (10-and-under tennis) within primary schools and clubs; Junior Tennis (children 12-and-under & 14-and-under) within all the secondary schools and clubs; Junior Performance Tennis for the most talented; and the effective use of equipment such as balls, bats and rackets, provided by the ITF.
Olympic Solidarity’s aim is to organise assistance for all the National Olympic Committees (NOCs), particularly those with the greatest needs, so that they can develop their own structures to favour the expansion of sport in their country.