The Vancouver Gay Volleyball Association (VGVA) is a provincially registered non-profit society and one of the longest operating volunteer organized sports groups in the Lower Mainland. The VGVA promotes a gay-positive and inclusive environment that focuses on volleyball play, fitness and—most of all—lots of FUN!
The VGVA started out in 1979 with just a small group of friends who wanted to get together on a regular basis to play volleyball, their favorite sport. They organized themselves into a group, found a location in the West End neighbourhood of Vancouver, and played on Friday nights on a single court. Little by little over the years, the group’s popularity increased.
It was only after the Gay Games III, which was held in Vancouver in 1990, that the interest in volleyball play (as well as other gay sporting groups) in the Lower Mainland soared to never-before-seen levels of interest. The group, who called themselves VGVA, saw expansion from one small league of about 40 people to three levels of about 120 members comprised of Recreational, Intermediate and Competitive Two players.
In 1994, after a lot of hard work to organize and restructure the group into a true community-oriented volunteer organization, VGVA registered itself under the Society Act of British Columbia. The VGVA is run by a group of dedicated volunteers who make up the Executive Board. They work tirelessly around their busy work and social schedules to provide an organized, comfortable and fun environment in which to play volleyball (in a league environment as well as in several tournaments and other special events throughout the season).
In addition to operating FIVE different skill divisions VGVA runs a summer drop-in grass league on Sundays. Enrollment for our season is over 170 strong, and it does not matter whether you are gay, lesbian, bisexual, straight, or whatever: the VGVA’s mandate is to provide a safe inclusive environment for gays and their friends in which to play volleyball and socialize.
The VGVA currently runs five divisions, which are made up of players with varying skill levels:
- Recreational Division — This level is for people who have never picked up a volleyball before, or for those volleyball enthusiasts who are not interested in a competitive system of play.
- Intermediate One — This division is designed for players who desire more than a recreational level of play but have little skill development background. Sessions focus on skill development and competitive volleyball strategies.
- Intermediate Two — This level is designed for players who have the ‘basics’ (i.e. bumping, setting, hitting, serving, etc.) down and would like to concentrate on refining these skills through drills and improving game sense through practice in a structured play enviornment. Must have played in one of the Intermediate Divisions previously or be familiar with a 6-2 system of play.
- Competitive One — This division is designed for players who have been playing volleyball for a number of years. They have mastered the basics and specialized positioning (i.e. 6-2 format).
- Competitive Two — Our highest level of play, this level is designed for players who have been playing competitively for numerous years and possess high consistent skills. These players are seriously dedicated to winning the game and playing hard fast ball.