By Melissa Sheil
ONE of Australia’s largest basketball carnivals for children with disabilities was held in Lesmurdie this week, with hundreds of students across Western Australia gearing up for a day of fun.
Known as the Kalability All Stars Basketball Carnival, the event is the largest and longest running of Kalamunda Secondary Education Support Centre’s (KSESC) sports roster, beginning in 2009 and attended by 11 disability specialist schools across the state.
“We are very proud to host the Kalability Basketball Carnival, which is the biggest interschool basketball carnival for students with disabilities in Australia,” KSESC principal Gayle Nelson said.
“It is wonderful to see the students gaining a sense of achievement as they play together as a team while gaining experience with social skills, as well as improving their physical and mental health and wellbeing.
“Our Kalability motto is ‘disability does not mean inability’, which is clearly displayed throughout the carnival.”
Speaking to Echo News before her game, KSESC player Brittany said though the atmosphere of the game will be very fun, it doesn’t mean the teams will go easy on each other.
“It’s a lot of fun to play but we are very competitive and want to win,” she said.
“We’re going to work together as a team to create our strategies and come out as the winner.
“We have trained heaps for this day so we hope we do really well.
“We sort of go wherever we want on the court but my job is to be a ball stealer – they call me the tiny pocket rocket.”
Attended by Minister for Disability Services Don Punch, Kalamunda MLA Matthew Hughes, Kalamunda mayor Margaret Thomas and students from Swan View, Cannington, Leeming, Cyril Jackson, Armadale, Dianella, Kenwick, Atwell, Byford and Kalamunda, the centre at Ray Owen reserve was packed full of excitement.
“From the big smiles on their faces it was easy to see how much fun the students were having,” Ms Nelson said.
“Our Kalability All Stars Sports Carnival program currently consists of four interschool carnivals per team, cricket in Term One, AFL in Term Three and soccer in Term Four – Term Two basketball is our biggest carnival.
“It was a fantastic day and a lot of fun was had by all.”
Division one and two were won by Cyril Jackson team one and two respectively, while Swan View team two took out the division three medal.