Nonprofit offers sport of pickleball for free to S. Maui students; volunteers sought
Maui Tennis and Pickleball Association is serving up the sport of pickleball to 20 elementary school students in South Maui.
A five-week pilot program at Kīhei Elementary School pairs volunteer instructors with 3rd through 5th graders. Eventually, the association hopes to expand the free program to students throughout Maui and is searching for volunteer instructors.
All supplies for the students, including paddles, nets, balls, court lines and accessories, are provided by the association through donations, adult league fees and fundraisers held by the nonprofit organization.
Jessie O’Neill-Prest, Kīhei Elementary School curriculum coordinator, said the school is glad to partner with Maui Tennis and Pickleball Association.
“Kīhei Elementary School’s partnership with MTPA allows our students access to an outdoor activity that fosters strategy and skill building, inclusivity, and a healthy lifestyle,” O’Neill-Prest said in a news release. “Students have voiced that pickleball is a sport that they would like to learn. We are proud to partner with MTPA and offer this sport to our students.”
Ralph Gorgoglione, Maui Tennis and Pickleball Association president, said the goal of the program is to get young kids excited about paddle/racket sports and teach them to use sports as a “vehicle for goal achievement, camaraderie, fitness and social development.”
For more information on the program or to find out about volunteering, email [email protected].