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Have-a-try day sessions for Albany high school students with disabilities

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Front, basketball participants Will Farmer and Isaac Eaton, with coach Samantha Dixon and Amy Eato.
Camera IconFront, basketball participants Will Farmer and Isaac Eaton, with coach Samantha Dixon and Amy Eato. Credit: Laurie Benson

A basketball have-a-try day will be held in Albany this Saturday for high school children with disabilities as part of a push for more inclusion in junior sport.

From 9am-10am, 12 to 17-year-olds who live with disabilities will have the chance to participate in basketball training and skills sessions at Bethel’s Passmore Centre.

The sessions are planned to run weekly on Saturdays during the Albany Basketball Association season in Term 4.

The program has been organised by Amy Eaton, whose 17-year-old son Isaac lives with autism and has an intellectual disability.

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Ms Eaton said her son was “mad keen” on basketball and used to play in Perth, but his only option since moving to Albany was to join her adult mixed social team.

Basketball participants Will Farmer and Isaac Eaton with coach Samantha Dixon and Amy Eaton, rear.
Camera IconBasketball participants Will Farmer and Isaac Eaton with coach Samantha Dixon and Amy Eaton, rear. Credit: Laurie Benson

“I’ve been sort of advocating with him for the last couple of years, and the ABA have come forward and they’re going to be providing a coach for Saturday morning throughout the basketball season, to coach and train kids with disabilities,” she said.

Ms Eaton said she had received an “amazing” response from people keen to join in on the Saturday morning sessions, and had even heard from adults who were interested in joining despite being too old for the program.

She said the program had been in the pipeline for a while, with ABA board member and coach Samantha Dixon involved in organising the sessions, as well as late ABA administrator Nicole Weeden.

The aim was for the sessions to lead to the formation of a team which could travel to play in competitions in Perth, including the Everyone’s Game Carnivals for athletes with disabilities.

Basketball participants Will Farmer and Isaac Eaton.
Camera IconBasketball participants Will Farmer and Isaac Eaton. Credit: Laurie Benson

“It’s just giving them the opportunity, and hopefully then they can be integrated into normal teams or have their own team and just trying to get things happening,” she said.

The basketball sessions follow the success of the all-abilities AFL program Albany Starkick which had its season extended because of its popularity.

For more information on how to get involved contact Amy Eaton at amyeaton22@gmail.com or 0432 125 460.

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