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BNA receives sponsorship boost

Looking up: the Bermuda Netball Association celebrates signing a two-year partnership with Digicel(Photograph by Akil Simmons)

The sky is the limit for netball on the island after the Bermuda Netball Association was handed a major boost in a new two-year partnership with Digicel.

That is the view of Gina Benjamin, the national team coach and BNA vice-president, who reflected on the importance of the partnership with Digicel, which will see the mobile phone network provider sponsor the female youth netball league.

The move will result in a $9,000 injection into the BNA, including sponsorship and the supply of equipment. The league will be officially called the Digicel Netball Association Junior League.

The partnership is not only aimed at on-field improvements, as it also includes the creation of a “Girls Strong” programme, which aims to empower young girls in the areas of leadership, communication, etiquette and education and consist of a series of speakers on different topics.

“The sky is limit for us now,” Benjamin said. “Netball globally is growing with professional leagues now in Australia and the United Kingdom. Both leagues have players from our region, which sparks hope for our young girls. We believe this sponsorship will help to foster their talent and provide opportunity.”

It is a sentiment reinforced by Kimale Evans, president of the Bermuda Netball Association, who believes the timely boost can finally aid them in fulfilling their long-standing aspirations for all levels of netball on the island.

“This just feeds into what we’ve been trying to do for the past couple of years, which is to promote the sport,” she said.

“With Digicel helping us along, we can help these young ladies, not only in the sport but academically as well.

“We have been operating our national programme consistently and are heading into our second year. This is definitely going to assist us on a national level, it is a huge boost.

“We’re steadily starting to grow and hopefully we can get back to the levels of where we used to be nationally.

“Everything evolves and we are trying to build on what was and make it even better.

“There are always more opportunities growing in sport for young females. We are making new partnerships with different clubs in UK and trying to give them new opportunities.

“This is just the start of our plans, the future is huge for Bermuda netball.”