Filipino-New Zealand Youth Leader Empowers Girls Through Basketball Referee Program
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young women high five each other
A young Filipino-New Zealand woman, Daphne Martinez, is demonstrating youth empowerment through basketball refereeing.

WELLINGTON (New Zealand) – An unexpected invitation to bench officiate at a basketball tournament has led Filipino-Kiwi, Daphne Martinez to discover a passion for basketball refereeing.  Now, a FIBA Foundation Youth Leader, she’s empowering young girls through her ‘The Rebound Collective’ project.

While basketball wasn’t initially part of Martinez’s life, a chance encounter ignited her passion, and she found a welcoming community in refereeing.  Her dedication to refereeing, the Wellington basketball community, and Basketball New Zealand, led her to participate in the FIBA Foundation Youth Leader Program.  From there she developed ‘The Rebound Collective’, a project created to inspire, and support young female referees.

The Rebound Collective: Encouraging Girls in Refereeing

“My Basketball for Good Project is called ‘The Rebound Collective’,” explains Martinez.  “The main purpose of the project is to reclaim, revive, and regenerate our kōhine (girls aged 13-18) in the refereeing space.  My program is designed for young female referees to stay confident, and safe while officiating.”

Offering a comprehensive support system throughout the season, ‘The Rebound Collective’ will equip participants with a solid foundation in basketball rules, while providing valuable mentorship and support for the next generation of young female referees.

“Throughout the season, participants will receive mentorship on and off the court with experienced referees providing guidance, support and encouragement,” Martinez said.  “We will also collaborate with Pou Whirinaki, a Capital Zone Basketball Trust referee mentor program, to further strengthen the support network for participants.”

This article has been edited by the sportanddev Operating Team

Image: FIBA



New Zealand
Sustainable Development Goals
5 - Gender equality
Target Group
Girls and women

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