Youth league ends successful season thanks to community of volunteers
COLUMBIA – The old saying “it takes a village” very much holds true for a local basketball league.
The Columbia Youth Basketball Association relies on volunteers to coach their teams of various age groups. The league has teams from second grade all the way through high school, and is hoping to add first graders to the mix next season. Many of the coaches are parents, and others are members of the community with a lot or very little coaching experience.
David Heidlage does not have a child in the league, but has always been passionate about basketball and coaching. He says volunteers like himself can offer a new opportunity for growth for kids.
“When a volunteer comes in, they can kind of bring a fresh attitude,” Heidlage said. The kids aren’t the only ones benefitting from volunteer work. “You get to go to practice and you kind of get to act like a kid yourself.”
Jim Chapdelain has been coaching for about 10 years and said the time is while spent because he gets to share something with his kids.
“My son’s gonna be there, so I get to have time with my son while I’m coaching,” Chapdelain said.
CYBA President Allen Jennings knows the importance of recreational sports.
“There are competitive options out there, but for the majority of kids, recreational basketball is exactly what we need here in Columbia,” said Jennings.
The league is always looking for new volunteers to help make the program happen.