Port Vila, Vanuatu, October 17, 2015 – Steve Anderson, Olympic Beach volleyball coach and long time supporter of Vanuatu Beach Volleyball, conducted a training course for ni-Vanuatu beach volleyball coaches.
The initiative is part of Oceania Sport Education Program’s work in promoting the need to build the foundation with proper system to support athlete development from grassroots to high performance.
Steve Anderson, a highly decorated international beach volleyball coach, is now head coach with Volleyball Canada. He was part of the journey of the Vanuatu Volleyball Federation when it began its national program in 2009. He has coached teams to Olympic gold and bronze medals – taking Australian pair Natalie Cook and Kerrie Pottharst to the third and first places at the Atlanta (1996) and Sydney (2000) Olympic Games respectively.
This is not the first time Mr. Anderson has assisted ni-Vanuatu coaches and players. Five years ago he mentored a coach who became head coach of the Vanuatu women’s volleyball team.
Mr. Anderson said he wants to extend the reach of beach volleyball coaching program across the Pacific.
“The Vanuatu women have demonstrated and established themselves as international level athletes,” Anderson said. “This coaching program has been tested and proven. I am delighted to assist with creating a legacy in the Pacific,” he added.
Bringing Mr. Anderson’s elite coaching expertise to Vanuatu is a partnership between Vanuatu Volleyball Federation (VVF) and Oceania National Olympic Committees (ONOC) Fiji-based Oceania Sport Education Program (OSEP).
“VVF have demonstrated a commitment to developing and showcasing their elite athletes regionally and internationally,” says (OSEP) Coordinator, Sainimili Talatoka.
“Their success in developing community sport with their Australian funded Volley4Change program has proven their desire to support both community and elite talent.”
During this visit, the OSEP Beach volleyball community and competition coaching courses will be finalized.
Vanuatu Volleyball Federation President Debbie Masauvakalo said it’s been a long-term goal to set up a program for ni-Vanuatu coaches from community to international level. And Mr Anderson’s presence will help realize it.
“If you have good coaches you’re going to have great athletes. Steve will motivate the coaches and offer them knowledge they would not otherwise have. If they can mirror his coaching, we will have the best coaches,” Ms Masauvakalo said.
Other Pacific volleyball associations are expected to see the benefits of the coaching program after this pilot project with the support of the Oceania Zone Volleyball Association [part of the Asian Volleyball Confederation (AVC) under the Federation of International Volleyball Federation (FIVB)]
Nine coaches took part in the course in Port Vila. The training was held at the Vanuatu Haus – home of the National Olympic Committee – and the National Beach Volleyball Center until October 16.