Kids learn more than basketball

Published 10:19 am Thursday, May 31, 2007

Coach Samuel West is not only teaching the fundamentals of basketball to Natchez Youth, he is teaching the game of life.

“We have a fun and fundamental camp operating here,” West said.

West is director of the camp, which is going on its 15th year. 40 kids are enrolled in the camp and a snack break with refreshments is provided every day. In addition to basketball, motivational speakers lecture every day about important life lessons. Friday the camp will be open to the public and certificates will be given.

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All of the kids love the drills and the coaches.

“The coaches make us work hard every day and it has made us a lot better,” camp participant Darrion Batieste said.

The coaches run drills, games and teach fundamentals during each session.

“We get to play knock out and around the world,” Earon Brown said. “We also get to do zig zag drills, passing drills, and free throws.”

West said the objective of the camp is to teach discipline and control to the kids. He wants to help the community as well.

“We want to make ourselves available in order to help Natchez go in the direction it is supposed to,” West said.

“We are teaching work ethic, discipline and the importance of self,” West said.

West stressed his appreciation for all of his sponsors.

“We have the best local sponsors,” West said. “Without them my camp would not be what it is and I am very thankful.”