Young refugees and migrants from across Hume are connecting with the local community through basketball.

Between 20-30 young people from migrant and refugee backgrounds gather at the Broadmeadows Basketball Association every Friday to play basketball and meet other young people. The sessions are part of the Centre for Multicultural Youth’s (CMY) transitions support program.

One participant, Saif Aeso, was a newcomer at the sessions less than two months ago, and now he is a volunteer assistant coach for the association.

Saif was born in Iraq and arrived in Australia just eight months ago.

“I love basketball and have been playing since I was 10 years old. I used to coach younger players back home,” he said.

Broadmeadows Basketball Association operations manager Todd Anderson said Saif was already coaching a skills session for under-12s and was a volunteer assistant coach for the senior women’s players.

“We are working with CMY to get more of the participants involved in coaching, possibly playing and doing a referee course.”

The program is open to young people aged 15-25.

There are plans to extend it to include a weekly tournament.