50/50 Draw
twitter facebook youtube intagram share this page send this page

What Peoples Basketball means to Henry Van Herk

9/6/2016 2:05:04 PM
Youth Leader Story

When I was first approached to be part of Peoples Basketball, I was unsure at the time whether it would be worthwhile, having never heard of the program before.  It has been eighteen months since then and I can say that my time spent with the program has been the best in my life. 

During my time with the program, we had great success both locally in Toronto, and across the border in the United States, playing in various AAU tournaments, where we had the opportunity to showcase our talents in front of Division I coaches. Most notably we played in the Adidas All In U17 Platinum Division in Cincinnati, where we went undefeated, beating LeBron James’ own AAU team in the finals 67-58.  The cause for our success was not luck, but in our practice regiment.  Practicing two times a week during the school year, on top of our school team practices, and three times a week during the summer, we prided ourselves on being incredibly hard workers, whether it be on the court, in the weight room, or doing hills and stairs at the park.  Not to mention we were always kept well fed at practice with healthy snacks and always provided with a means of getting to and from practice, whether it be carpooling or by public transit.  Additionally, we were fortunate enough to partake in clinics run by people such as coaching staff for the Toronto Raptors, and be involved in events during the NBA All-Star Weekend in Toronto that helped develop our game at the same level as professionals do.  I can easily attribute my success as a basketball player, and my recruitment by a handful of CIS programs to Peoples Basketball, and because of it, I am now attending Queen’s University, where I will be playing for the Men’s Varsity Basketball Team.   

Not only has Peoples Basketball allowed me to take my skills on the court to new levels, but under the mentorship of the coaches of the team and those who are affiliated with The Peoples Church, I have learned many life skills that will help me on my new journey at Queen’s University.  Between assisting with fundraisers at The Peoples Church, which helped pay for our trips to the United States, and partaking in sessions run by guest speakers at the church, both the Peoples Basketball program and The Peoples Church have helped mold me into the man that I am today.

There is no other program out there doing what Peoples Basketball does, with the amount of skill, effort and passion that they bring.  I am very thankful for the opportunities that I have been given since joining Peoples Basketball, and I don’t know where I would be without them.  I have become not just friends with those who are a part of this program, but I am happy to call them family.

-          Henry Van Herk