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Foyle ‘floored’ and ‘excited’ by decade of Academics and Athletics camps

Foyle ‘floored’ and ‘excited’ by decade of Academics and Athletics camps

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When this country’s lone NBA player Adonal Foyle conceptualised staging a basketball camp first in the Grenadine island of Canouan in 2003, never did he envisage that it would have been around 10 years after.{{more}}

And, withstanding the test of time, Foyle and his Kerosene Lamp Foundation conducted its 2013 edition this past week on mainland St Vincent. It is set to culminate in Canouan next Tuesday, after setting up camp on Bequia last Wednesday and Thursday and touching down on Union Island on Monday.

An elated Foyle spoke to SEARCHLIGHT last Tuesday, at the conclusion of the set-up on the mainland at the Arnos Vale Netball Complex and was satisfied with his efforts over the years.

“….Looking back at the ten years, I am floored by it and excited,” Foyle said, with his trademark broad grin.

Part of the personal satisfaction Foyle has listed is the transformation which he has observed in some of the athletes over the years.

“… I have seen the kids whose lives have been changed … It is not making it to the next level; it is their confidence, the way they approach the game, the way they approach life, the way they approach their academics; the professionalism we hoped they will get and many of them have started to understand that … It is not about basketball .. It is about having a balanced life – the academics with sports mixed in between,” Foyle noted.

Foyle’s three-point shot over the 10 years, was the gratification he received from a personal email sent to him by Craig Friday of Bequia, who is on a four-year scholarship in Taiwan.

Foyle said that Friday wrote in the email that he (Foyle) has had a major influence in his life and basketball.

“… Here was somebody taking the time when their career has taken off to say how much we have had an impact … I was in tears, because you do the things and you don’t know why you are doing them, except you know that they need to get done… And when kids go through the system and they are the better for it, it is something that is just amazing to be a part of… To see the hope in their eyes; that’s worth it every day,” Foyle commented.

Friday was part of the early camps which were staged in Bequia.

Since the initial camp in 2003, the KLF has varied the annual camps here in St Vincent and the Grenadines. The camps were spread to Trinidad and Tobago and Dominica in 2010 and 2011 respectively.

Additionally, an All Star Student Athlete component was added in 2010, when six of the best prospects from St Vincent and the Grenadines were sent to the USA for two weeks to be part of camps there. The same was done last year as well, when seven made the trip.

This year, the 10th anniversary, saw pre-camp clinic events staged in Petit Bordel, South Rivers and Barrouallie, before the main camp was staged at Arnos Vale last Monday and Tuesday.

Like previous camps, apart from the skills components, there was the dissemination of healthy lifestyles education and leadership education, among others.

The first day of the camps is open to all youths, with the second day allocated to 30 with the correct attitude and aptitude needed for the sport.

Foyle, who now holds a Master’s Degree in Sports Psychology, played in the professional basketball circuit from 1997 to 2010.

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