Tuesday 23 May 2023 | Written by Losirene Lacanivalu | Published in Athletics
Athletics Cook Islands president Simone Fe’ao says the programme is part of the World Kids Athletics Day, a worldwide promotion to get kids active and moving.
Fe’ao says six islands are participating this year and the idea is to “give it a go” – creating a number of different circuits to allow kids to take part in outdoor activities.
“It also activates parents in the community to be part of the activity with their kids and help organise it too,” Fe’ao said.
She said the programme has been successful in Mitiaro, Mauke, Mangaia, Aitutaki, Atiu and Rarotonga this year.
There are about 480 children across the six islands, including 120 from Rarotonga, taking part in the Athletics Cook Islands programme.
Fe’ao said the participation has increased this year compared to last year.
“The idea is that this can be the start for the outer islands to keep growing – we got resources and support for them.
“It’s hard in the Pa Enua, they don’t have similar resources to Rarotonga but they have been able to do it with just using the coconuts for shot put, using jandals or whatever works.”
She said parents and the community have been supportive this year.
In Rarotonga, the programme is held on Mondays and Wednesdays from 3pm-4pm.
Mitiaro celebrated World Kids Athletics Day on Friday, May 12, improvising with rubbish bins and coconuts as athletics equipment.
“It was great to see the sea of green and white t-shirts on the field,” said Athletics Cook Islands.
World Athletics chief executive Jon Ridgeon earlier said: “We believe that Kids’ Athletics has the power to get the world moving and that every child is born to move, play and explore no matter where they are in the world or their individual circumstances.”
Eighty-one (81) per cent of adolescents don’t meet the world health level of activity. Kids Athletics Day is one of many ways Athletics Cook Islands is committed to making sure our children and our community know that there are a variety of different avenues available for incorporating exercise into daily life.
If you have any questions about athletics or are keen to get involved, you can come along on Friday or contact Simone Fe’ao by phone on 50343 or Ruth Mave on 51418.