Since 1999 more than 12,000 boys and girls have participated in week-long basketball camps in the under-served neighborhoods in The Bahamas, where 20 percent of the homes have no running water or electricity and the hope that allows children to reach their full potential glimmers faintly under the veil of poverty. The reputation of The Bahamas as a vacation delight is richly deserved, but behind the scenes is a world where boys and girls do not see possibilities and do not have desirable options.
More than just a camp, Basketball Smiles programs help children develop character and leadership skills that are stepping stones to a successful future on and off the court.
Since 1999 this free week-long basketball camp for boys and girls has positively affected lives generationally in the most underserved neighborhoods of Nassau in The Bahamas.
Along with the highest quality instruction, campers receive a nutritious meal every day at camp. With the basketball court as a laboratory, we encourage campers to set goals, cultivate self-discipline and choose lifestyles that do not include drugs and violence.
We provide approximately 200 gallons of water and 200 pounds of ice to keep the children hydrated while playing on an outdoor asphalt court where the heat index is usually 104 to 108 degrees.
It's more than just about basketball, our Life Skills Program is designed to develop leadership qualities and self-discipline and raise the children’s academic expectations and self-esteem, while encouraging them to be active and conscientious citizens. Life Skills are incorporated daily into the camp activities. Campers are rewarded for good choices and they are exposed to an environment that fosters mutual respect and personal responsibility.
Campers receive a T-shirt, a school backpack and their own camp basketball at the end of the week. On the last day, we host a pizza lunch and awards ceremony for the boys and girls to help encourage their positive lifestyle behaviors and decisions.
We have many children who attend our camps year after year. Some return after graduating to serve and inspire those who come behind them. Community support along with our donors and sponsors are what keeps Basketball Smiles free; with the cost per Camper averaging $350 your support is crucial to keep our initiatives going.