Date: January 8, 2024
Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso – The Burkina Faso Badminton Association made a significant stride in promoting grassroots badminton among the country’s youthful population through its innovative “Local Shuttle Day” (LSD) initiative, held on Sunday, January 7, 2024. The President of the Federation Dr Ouedraogo Boukaré , in a statement, highlighted the challenges faced in meeting the high demand for badminton equipment, particularly shuttlecocks, and shared the inspiring efforts undertaken to address these limitations.
Burkina Faso boasts a young population, with 70% falling under the youth category. The growing interest in badminton among children, coupled with the training of 45 physical education (PE) teachers annually through the Shuttle Time project, has amplified the demand for equipment, especially shuttlecocks.
President Dr Ouedraogo Boukaré, emphasizing the equipment shortage, stated, “It often happens in my club that I bring together more than sixty children who already know how to play, but we only have two worn shuttlecocks. In the local market, shuttlecocks are scarce, and their prices, around 30USD, are beyond our reach. To overcome this challenge, the children approached me with a unique solution – to create shuttlecocks themselves. I encouraged them, saying if others can do it, why not us?”
This led to the inauguration of the “Local Shuttle Day” (LSD) initiative, a day dedicated to fostering creativity and resilience in the face of equipment scarcity. The President stressed the genuine commitment of the young badminton enthusiasts, who used locally-sourced materials such as feathers from local chickens and guinea fowl, pieces of fabric, worn shoes, and liquid glue to craft makeshift shuttlecocks.
Currently we have only been able to make awkward badminton shuttlecocks but we intend to continue until we find the right formula.
In a plea to address the ongoing equipment shortage, the Federation is reaching out to donors for support. Additionally, they are extending an invitation to professional designers and manufacturers to contribute their expertise and collaborate on manufacturing equipment. The President emphasized that there are eager human resources within the country, ready to be trained in the field and contribute to the growth of badminton in Burkina Faso.
The “Local Shuttle Day” not only showcases the determination of the Burkina Faso Badminton Association in overcoming challenges but also highlights the enthusiasm and resilience of the young badminton players who are keen to continue their learning journey despite limited resources. As the Federation looks towards the future, they hope to find lasting solutions with the support of the local and international badminton community.