Back in the Gym: Basketball camp presented by Tangerine

Over the last 18 months, the community sports sector has been put on hold. With the pandemic heightening social inequities, only 30% of youth were involved in sport. We know that COVID-19 has halted the youth sport landscape. We understand that without sport, connections are lost. Youth are missing their outlet, their passion, their happy place. At MLSE LaunchPad, our focus has always been to empower youth through sport, and we understand that we play a critical role in helping rebuild sport in the community.

In August, MLSE Foundation and Tangerine teamed up to deliver the first in-person program at MLSE LaunchPad since re-opening; a 2-week basketball camp for boys and girls ages 11-18. A partnership to help bring back sport. To get youth moving. To reconnect our community through a common passion: basketball.

John Amoah, who's a dedicated Program Leader at MLSE LaunchPad, is committed to getting youth re-engaged with sport.

“Having youth back in our gym is crucial because the past year and a half we’ve been doing everything virtually. So kid’s now actually have something physical to do and something structured. At LaunchPad we provide so much for the community, and when our doors are closed, we can’t do what we do best and that’s serve the community. Basketball is one out of many things, so just having our doors open again is great.”

"Growing up in the area that I grew up in, if we didn’t have any camps, maybe I would have gotten caught up with something I shouldn’t be doing, so camps like this is very crucial to the communities.”
- John Amoah

The implications of basketball span far beyond the final score. Basketball, like all sports, is an engine for growth. It's a way for youth to learn and develop, to build relationships, and to tap into their potential. Although there's plenty of work to be done, the camp built momentum in restoring this invaluable contribution of community sport, and its impact was felt by the youth who participated.

Tenzing, 14, is a longtime MLSE LaunchPad member. “I just loved the intensity, the hard work, sweating, running up and down the court and making buckets – just the energy,” he said.

"Basketball has taught me about the importance of hard work and not giving up, because you never know where basketball or academics can take you. It's about teamwork, friends, inclusion, being kind.”

The energy in the gym embodied a sense of unity and togetherness that had been missing across communities for far too long. The chorus of basketballs bouncing off the hardwood, sneakers squeaking across the floor, players cheering one another on; the spirit of basketball, of sport, was BACK.

"I missed playing with my friends and just simply hanging out," said Francisco, 17. "It’s good to feel the competitiveness, the atmosphere, playing ball, using skill moves, I missed all of that a lot over the pandemic."

"Watching the comradery of all the kids and the staff play – and just the competition and the energy levels of it, it really hypes up the building," explained Coach Matt. "Without the doors being open, it really puts a damper on the neighbourhood and the community. Whenever we have these doors open, things feel in place and normal."

"Whenever we have these doors open, things feel in place and normal"
- Coach Matt

In addition to teaching fundamental basketball skills, camp by Tangerine taught youth about leadership, teamwork, and discipline to better prepare them both on and off the playing field. Coach Alarice hopes she can use her relationship with basketball to pass along invaluable life lessons that she's learned throughout her athletic journey.

“I hope basketball makes them a better person. I hope the stuff I teach them they can implement in the real world, because basketball teaches you a lot of real-world lessons.”

With the support of partners like Tangerine, we're committed to making a sustained investment in youth sport. By making programming more affordable, accessible, and inclusive for youth, we can rebuild a youth sport sector that's for EVERYONE and leaves no youth on the sidelines.

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Back in the Gym: Basketball camp presented by Tangerine
MLSE Foundation

Over the last 18 months, the community sports sector has been put on hold. With the pandemic heightening social inequities, only 30% of youth were involved in sport. We know that COVID-19 has halted the youth sport landscape. We understand that without sport, connections are lost. Youth are missing their outlet, their passion, their happy place. At MLSE LaunchPad, our focus has always been to empower youth through sport, and we understand that we play a critical role in helping rebuild sport in the community.

In August, MLSE Foundation and Tangerine teamed up to deliver the first in-person program at MLSE LaunchPad since re-opening; a 2-week basketball camp for boys and girls ages 11-18. A partnership to help bring back sport. To get youth moving. To reconnect our community through a common passion: basketball.

John Amoah, who's a dedicated Program Leader at MLSE LaunchPad, is committed to getting youth re-engaged with sport.

“Having youth back in our gym is crucial because the past year and a half we’ve been doing everything virtually. So kid’s now actually have something physical to do and something structured. At LaunchPad we provide so much for the community, and when our doors are closed, we can’t do what we do best and that’s serve the community. Basketball is one out of many things, so just having our doors open again is great.”

"Growing up in the area that I grew up in, if we didn’t have any camps, maybe I would have gotten caught up with something I shouldn’t be doing, so camps like this is very crucial to the communities.”
- John Amoah

The implications of basketball span far beyond the final score. Basketball, like all sports, is an engine for growth. It's a way for youth to learn and develop, to build relationships, and to tap into their potential. Although there's plenty of work to be done, the camp built momentum in restoring this invaluable contribution of community sport, and its impact was felt by the youth who participated.

Tenzing, 14, is a longtime MLSE LaunchPad member. “I just loved the intensity, the hard work, sweating, running up and down the court and making buckets – just the energy,” he said.

"Basketball has taught me about the importance of hard work and not giving up, because you never know where basketball or academics can take you. It's about teamwork, friends, inclusion, being kind.”

The energy in the gym embodied a sense of unity and togetherness that had been missing across communities for far too long. The chorus of basketballs bouncing off the hardwood, sneakers squeaking across the floor, players cheering one another on; the spirit of basketball, of sport, was BACK.

"I missed playing with my friends and just simply hanging out," said Francisco, 17. "It’s good to feel the competitiveness, the atmosphere, playing ball, using skill moves, I missed all of that a lot over the pandemic."

"Watching the comradery of all the kids and the staff play – and just the competition and the energy levels of it, it really hypes up the building," explained Coach Matt. "Without the doors being open, it really puts a damper on the neighbourhood and the community. Whenever we have these doors open, things feel in place and normal."

"Whenever we have these doors open, things feel in place and normal"
- Coach Matt

In addition to teaching fundamental basketball skills, camp by Tangerine taught youth about leadership, teamwork, and discipline to better prepare them both on and off the playing field. Coach Alarice hopes she can use her relationship with basketball to pass along invaluable life lessons that she's learned throughout her athletic journey.

“I hope basketball makes them a better person. I hope the stuff I teach them they can implement in the real world, because basketball teaches you a lot of real-world lessons.”

With the support of partners like Tangerine, we're committed to making a sustained investment in youth sport. By making programming more affordable, accessible, and inclusive for youth, we can rebuild a youth sport sector that's for EVERYONE and leaves no youth on the sidelines.

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"
"

MORE STORIES

Over the last 18 months, the community sports sector has been put on hold. With the pandemic heightening social inequities, only 30% of youth were involved in sport. We know that COVID-19 has halted the youth sport landscape. We understand that without sport, connections are lost. Youth are missing their outlet, their passion, their happy place. At MLSE LaunchPad, our focus has always been to empower youth through sport, and we understand that we play a critical role in helping rebuild sport in the community.

In August, MLSE Foundation and Tangerine teamed up to deliver the first in-person program at MLSE LaunchPad since re-opening; a 2-week basketball camp for boys and girls ages 11-18. A partnership to help bring back sport. To get youth moving. To reconnect our community through a common passion: basketball.

John Amoah, who's a dedicated Program Leader at MLSE LaunchPad, is committed to getting youth re-engaged with sport.

“Having youth back in our gym is crucial because the past year and a half we’ve been doing everything virtually. So kid’s now actually have something physical to do and something structured. At LaunchPad we provide so much for the community, and when our doors are closed, we can’t do what we do best and that’s serve the community. Basketball is one out of many things, so just having our doors open again is great.”

"
"Growing up in the area that I grew up in, if we didn’t have any camps, maybe I would have gotten caught up with something I shouldn’t be doing, so camps like this is very crucial to the communities.”
"

- John Amoah

The implications of basketball span far beyond the final score. Basketball, like all sports, is an engine for growth. It's a way for youth to learn and develop, to build relationships, and to tap into their potential. Although there's plenty of work to be done, the camp built momentum in restoring this invaluable contribution of community sport, and its impact was felt by the youth who participated.

Tenzing, 14, is a longtime MLSE LaunchPad member. “I just loved the intensity, the hard work, sweating, running up and down the court and making buckets – just the energy,” he said.

"Basketball has taught me about the importance of hard work and not giving up, because you never know where basketball or academics can take you. It's about teamwork, friends, inclusion, being kind.”

The energy in the gym embodied a sense of unity and togetherness that had been missing across communities for far too long. The chorus of basketballs bouncing off the hardwood, sneakers squeaking across the floor, players cheering one another on; the spirit of basketball, of sport, was BACK.

"I missed playing with my friends and just simply hanging out," said Francisco, 17. "It’s good to feel the competitiveness, the atmosphere, playing ball, using skill moves, I missed all of that a lot over the pandemic."

"Watching the comradery of all the kids and the staff play – and just the competition and the energy levels of it, it really hypes up the building," explained Coach Matt. "Without the doors being open, it really puts a damper on the neighbourhood and the community. Whenever we have these doors open, things feel in place and normal."

"
"Whenever we have these doors open, things feel in place and normal"
"

- Coach Matt

In addition to teaching fundamental basketball skills, camp by Tangerine taught youth about leadership, teamwork, and discipline to better prepare them both on and off the playing field. Coach Alarice hopes she can use her relationship with basketball to pass along invaluable life lessons that she's learned throughout her athletic journey.

“I hope basketball makes them a better person. I hope the stuff I teach them they can implement in the real world, because basketball teaches you a lot of real-world lessons.”

With the support of partners like Tangerine, we're committed to making a sustained investment in youth sport. By making programming more affordable, accessible, and inclusive for youth, we can rebuild a youth sport sector that's for EVERYONE and leaves no youth on the sidelines.

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"

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"

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"

MORE STORIES