Tuesday, 28 May 2024

Club Cactus Juniors: Empowering Youth in Volleyball

Bill Lang is a passionate advocate for getting more kids involved in volleyball. Throughout his 28-year coaching career, he has dedicated himself to the growth of the sport, coaching at both the club and high school levels. When given the opportunity to collaborate with Starlings Volleyball, USA as a Sister Club, Club Cactus Juniors Volleyball Club (based in Tucson, Arizona) enthusiastically accepted.

Club Cactus immediately stepped in to support Starlings Tucson when the new club launched in January of this year. Despite the setbacks caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Club Cactus provided gym space, a financial donation, and even offered a free entry to a Club Cactus-hosted tournament. These contributions will continue, and there are plans to further expand the interaction between the two clubs. Club Cactus coaches and administrators are always available to offer guidance and instruction to the Starlings club, and Lang hopes to eventually integrate the Starlings players into Club Cactus practices and scrimmages.

This partnership is not one-sided. CCJ parents have expressed their gratitude for sponsoring Starlings Tucson, and the Club Cactus players themselves appreciate the presence of the Starlings kids. Lang also sees the Sister Club status as a potential recruiting tool, opening up opportunities for talented players to join the National-level team.

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Club Cactus has a history of promoting inclusivity and accessibility in volleyball. They provide their own members with opportunities to offset club fees by working at the club’s annual tournament. Last year, almost one-third of the club’s 175 families took advantage of this offer. Additionally, Club Cactus assists members in finding alternative funding through methods like selling ads and securing sponsorships.

Club Cactus Juniors’ mission aligns perfectly with Starlings Volleyball’s goal of making volleyball accessible to a diverse population. Together, they are making a significant impact in their community and helping to grow the sport they love.