|Silver jubilee year for Rodgers’ camp|
Guardian Sports Editor
Published: May 22, 2012
The Jeff Rodgers Basketball Camp is now in its 25th year.
For the man who was there from its inception, the years have flown by. The event itself has become a main staple in the sporting landscape of this country, that young kids look forward to, from year to year. This year, according to organizer Jeff Rodgers, will be no different as the camp embarks upon its 25th Silver Anniversary camp. This year’s camp will be held July 25-27 at the Bahamas Academy of Seventh-Day Adventists (SDA) on Wulff Road.
“I’m more excited this year than ever before,” said Rodgers yesterday. “One of the things that is taking priority this year, is to get fathers and mothers involved. It’s good to teach the fundamentals of basketball but there is so much more to life than our young people playing basketball or playing sports. I think sometimes, we kind of miss the boat when we don’t take quality time to spend with our children. There is going to be
a father-son evening where fathers play like a one-on-one with others fathers and sons, and then the same thing with mothers and daughters. We’re just trying to build some excitement to the camp. I expect some great things to happen and I’m looking forward to making this year very successful.”
Over the years, the camp which caters to hundreds of Bahamian youngsters, has grown by leaps and bounds. Rodgers has even branched off to other countries in the region, staging camp sessions in the Turks and Caicos Islands and Jamaica. This year, he has committed himself to having a camp in Abaco, and quite possibly, returning to the Turks and Caicos Islands and Jamaica.
“Wherever we go, the message is the same – to encourage young people to believe in themselves and in their futures,” said Rodgers. “Most people have callings in life – some accept them and some don’t. I think mine is to work with young people. It’s been a blessing to me because it has helped me to keep my life together.
“It is a joy when you can touch young people’s lives and motivate them and encourage them. There is always hope when you’re focussing on the positive things in life, and young kids need to know that. When we look at the kids who have been touched by this camp over the years, to see some of them working as instructors in the camp is a blessing. We’ve helped some of them go off to college and we have seen them come back home and are now working in the community. It’s a joy to be able to see that.”
Working along with the kids this year are Cleveland Cavaliers’ Head Coach Byron Scott, Cavaliers NBA ‘Rookie of the Year’ Kyrie Irving, Detroit Pistons assistant coach Dee Brown, Tyrone Bogues, former NBA player Scott Burrell and Klay Thompson – son of former Bahamian NBA great Mychal ‘Sweet Bells’ Thompson and current starting two guard of the Golden State Warriors, just to name a few.
“It’s a great crew that we have coming down,” said Rodgers. “I’m sure all of the kids and their parents will appreciate what we have in store for them this year. I’m just looking forward to putting it all together for the kids.”
Sponsors coming on board to assist with the camp this year include: Scotiabank Bahamas Ltd., Royal Bank of Canada, J.S. Johnson Insurance Ltd., Colina Insurance Ltd., Family Guardian, Bamboo Shack, Bahamas Business Solutions, Jewel Party Supplies, Freddie’s Barber, the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, the Ministry of Tourism and The Bahamas’ Conference of Seventh-day Adventists (SDA). Rodgers said that he is grateful to all of them.