Tag Archives: Girls

From A Volunteer

27 May

New to the Doc Wayne Program during this recent basketball season, I am overwhelmed by what I’ve been a part of. My participation as a volunteer coach, referee, participant evaluator, and learning the curriculum has been, as an understatement, tremendously rewarding. To see the Doc Wayne Program in action using sports as a therapeutic tool is to see transformation happen. The participants in Doc Wayne come from an unimaginable different number of backgrounds. Through the thoughtfully designed goals which build throughout a sport season, the philosophy of the program remains constant: to build these kids up. As an outsider from the programs Doc Wayne services, it can be difficult to describe just what happens from week to week. But I know the successes when I see them shine through the eyes, smiles and sense of self the girls radiate during each session. Watching a timid girl in week one whose body language is screaming “get me out of here!!” evolve into a confident presence is more than heartwarming. Many times I’ve heard, “I can’t do that,” or “I don’t want to try” because they lack even a shred of belief in themselves. Or the girl who asks her coach to go into a game after a month of sitting on the bench, too scared to participate—and she scores her first basket. The sense of pride washing over her is unmistakable. Then, there is the effect of the program on the complete opposite type of child. The one who has developed a tough exterior and attitude to cope with her surroundings and what she has lived through. Putting in action positive reinforcement by coaches and staff taking the time to explain alternative ways to react within the moment, the defiance that once consumed the child begins to slowly soften into a respectful, communicative, thoughtful individual. Imagine the person whose first reaction to conflict resolution might have been to get into a physical fight. When you see that same girl put to use the skills Doc Wayne teaches through its goals, you can actually see her stopping herself, taking that extra breath and thinking before reacting. And when she is involved in a difficult battle for the ball and an opposing player ends up on the floor, to see her reach out her hand to help the other girl up—that is success in action. Growth is not only happening individually, but as a team. As they work together, the Doc Wayne program teaches them life skills through teamwork and active situations—as they are happening—as opposed to simply discussing hypotheticals and what to do when presented with a difficult situation. Doc Wayne provides all of this through unique therapeutic learning opportunities using sports. They have managed to turn what was once an obstacle that faced these girls into a gateway through that roadblock for them to succeed. Truly impressive.

Maren M.-Doc Wayne Volunteer

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Therapeutic Referee’s Game Recap

23 May