During our years in operation, we have had many amazing families not only supporting but also helping us build a better club, a better environment for the local community. In this article, the Nicholson family will take us through their full journey of being part of the bigger family of the Suns!
"As a family, we found ourselves joining an inspiring Basketball community at Sevenoaks Suns back in 2017. From our first trip to Sevenoaks School for Josh to join an U16 Boys training session through to travelling around Kent in his first competitive season playing Men’s Division 1 this past year, it has been a rewarding and exciting journey not only for Josh but for us as a family.
Josh joined the U16 team after some friends suggested that he go along and try out – he had played for his School since age 11 but he had been committed to Judo outside School and he needed to make space to be able to give his all to Basketball . We quickly realised that Basketball is an enriching sport and community in many ways. We also discovered that Sevenoaks Suns is not only a club for players but it includes coaches, families and friends too.
Over the years we have seen that Basketball has an immense amount of community value which teaches young people many important life skills aside from learning how to play a fast paced game which keeps them fit and motivated. The culture and growing appeal of Basketball means that the sport connects people of different ages, gender and background and fosters a community spirit which is often lacking in today’s ‘online’ world.
Learning the skills for Basketball first and then learning how to be a team player teaches so much about how to grow, how to fall, how to win and how to learn from mistakes.
From the hard work and discipline of training through to the challenges of playing games, dealing with fouls, competitiveness and injuries, each stage is an experience for the players to learn from. These life skills enrich the wider communities we live in as our young players grow and spread their experiences.
In the ever increasing stressful and anxious years experienced by teenagers, Basketball provides an outlet and an alternative to some less desirable paths or distractions.
As a family, we engaged with the Club along with many families before us, starting with arranging the post-match refreshments when playing at home, moving on to Team managers which included washing and arranging players’ kits (accommodating ‘favourable/lucky’ numbers for the players) and ensuring everyone had lifts to away matches. Our company has sponsored the Club over the last 3 years and are proud to see our Logo on the Kits. We are still avid supporters of the Mens’ games, travelling around to home and away matches and now Josh’s sister, Emilia, brings her camera to take photos for the team and the social media accounts.
We have always enjoyed attending Suns’ matches to support the teams including the WBBL team when they played their home games at Sevenoaks School but also up to the O2 for their Championship finals. We are at all of the Mens’ home games with a growing band of supporters getting behind our team.
Not only has Josh been committed to playing through his National League and Mens’ games and training, he also became a coach in 2019 and he coached through the Pandemic with Zoom sessions arranged by Dimitris and continues to coach around his work now.
We have met some brilliant friends through Suns from courtside chats with other families on game tactics, through to some inspiring coaches who have showed such dedication, commitment and love for Basketball. And of course a network of friends of all ages whose love of Basketball binds the players and their families together. We are looking forward to continuing on the Suns’ journey as more people join in and the passion for Basketball continues to spread."