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Volleyball Olympian jumps at the chance to engage young kids

Volleyball with Rachel Uren

Image: Volleyball ACT Coach of the Year, Rachel Uren, helping to host volleyball tournaments for children in Sporting Schools.

Last year’s Volleyball ACT Coach of the Year, Rachel Uren, has made a huge impact on the growth of volleyball in Canberra, most recently engaging a number of primary school students through the Sporting Schools program.

Given her strong passion for the sport, extensive knowledge of the game, and impressive playing history, Rachel jumped at the opportunity to improve the exposure of the game to young children.

“I was 16 when I first touched a volleyball, so I realised a lot of primary school aged children had probably never heard of (or played) volleyball before, and I wanted to change that,” Rachel said.

The program is designed to introduce volleyball to primary school children in a fun and friendly environment.

On top of the weekly sessions, Rachel also hosts Junior Volleyball Tournaments each school term to give all the children in the Junior Volleyball Program the opportunity to play against children from other schools in Canberra.

The most recent tournament, hosted this past Saturday at the Lyneham Hockey Centre, attracted a record number of over 70 players from schools all around the region, who got the chance to be coached by members of local clubs, Canberra Heat representatives and athletes from the AIS Volleyball Centre of Excellence.

“This is a huge thrill for the children as they get to know their local Canberra clubs and some of the best players in ACT and Australia,” she said.

Rachel continues to strive to involve even more school-aged children with the sport, and believes that schools delivering volleyball through the Sporting Schools program is a great way to introduce kids to the sport in a very supportive and safe environment.

Sporting Schools is a $160 million Australian Government initiative to get more children playing more sport, before, during and after school. Want to run a Spikezone volleyball program at your school? Check out all the details on the Volleyball Australia page.