The National Wheelchair Basketball Association (NWBA) in the United States has signed a deal with the National Basketball Association (NBA) with the aim of attracting more young players to the game.
The NWBA intends to work with its existing teams who have an affiliation to the NBA - the world's premier basketball league - to become more involved with Jr. NBA programmes aimed boys and girls aged between six and 14.
The partnership will see additional resources provided to NWBA youth programmes with the Jr. NBA app and website, serving as the best sources of information for youth basketball players, parents, coaches and officials.
Organisations can register through the website and receive benefits such as access to Jr, NBA events and a free starter kit including banners, nets, whistles, clipboards, cones and other items.
The website also features a league management software programme and instructional videos for basketball skills and drills, with the Jr NBA's goal being to reach five million youngsters in the US and Canada over the next two years through a series of clinics, challenges and tournaments.
"Our partnership provides numerous benefits to NWBA youth member clubs and to those who may be considering starting a youth wheelchair basketball programme," said Jim Scherr, NWBA executive director.
"Our goal is to identify programmes where the NWBA can be involved to attract more players to wheelchair basketball, especially youth as this is our future for major international competition success."
Scherr, a competitor for the US in wrestling at the Seoul 1988 Olympic Games, was appointed interim executive director of the NWBA in August, replacing Randy Schubert, who had stepped down a month earlier.
The former United States Olympic Committee (USOC) chief executive is primarily focusing on sponsorship, fundraising and raising the brand and profile of the NWBA.
It is Scherr's first role since leaving his post as the chief operating officer of Baku 2015 European Games in April 2014.
He had been chief executive at the USOC for nine years between 2000 and 2009 and, before that, was executive director of USA Wrestling for 10 years.
August 2015: Former USOC chief executive given new role at National Wheelchair Basketball Association
July 2015: National Wheelchair Basketball Association appoint Jones as director of sport
June 2015: Buchi named United States’ men’s wheelchair basketball head coach for 2015 Kitakyushu Champions’ Cup
June 2015: United States reveal 12-man wheelchair basketball squad for Toronto 2015 Parapan American Games
February 2013: Lykins named head coach of US men’s wheelchair basketball team