Living Democracy

Basketball Camp Focuses on Fun, Faith, Bridging Divides

Group picture of participants at Basketball campAll In Sports Outreach Inc. has a mission to bring Selma together through faith, youth, and a little bit of basketball.
 
The Christian group held a three-day basketball camp for Selma’s youth this past week.  Over 85 kids showed up to the first day of camp. Many of them looked on in curiosity at first but eventually joined in on the action.
 
While the kids got to work on their free throws, tricks shots, and ball handling skills,  they were also exposed to some Bible lessons. Every 45 minutes all activity ceased. As the kids rehydrated and reenergized, one of the camp’s team members led them in a session focused on Christian values.
 
Campers playing basketball at basketball campOne important goal of the All In Sports Outreach Inc. camp was to bridge the racial divide in Selma. Although changing the perspectives of older generations may be a challenge,  molding the minds of the youth to be indifferent toward a person’s skin color could generate a cycle that will help change Selma’s future.
 
With racial tension building across the nation and being aired on virtually every media outlet, “birds of a feather flock together” has become an even stronger cliché’ in racially divided communities. The camp in Selma gave the kids who attended a model to look up to and showed them that it is possible to coexist as both black and white kids and team members participated in the activities.
 
For some participants, it seemed to bring the definition of being a kid back to life.
 
Campers practicing their layups at basketball campOn the first day, camp team members walked through the G.W. Carver Homes neighborhood to recruit kids to come out to the camp. The hard part was actually finding kids. With there being clear skies, fresh air and lots of sun you’d think there would be kids running around everywhere, but most were inside likely playing on electronic devices.
 
But playing basketball made kids get up, get out and get moving, providing them with a good source of exercise that felt more like good old-fashion fun.
The kids were sweaty, tired and worn out by the end of the camp, but they had made new friends and learned some values that they could use for life.
 
All In Sports Outreach Inc. encouraged kids to create relationships, have fun, have faith and put their all into whatever they do.

By Illyshia Parker
Last Updated: July 10, 2015