Building basketball communities from the ground up.
At the Athlete Empowerment Initiative, we've seen first-hand the power of basketball. It brings people together, gels communities, provides a spark of joy and hope even in dark times, and opens otherwise unattainable doors for people across the world.
Yet, not every community gets the same chance to enjoy these benefits. As sports become highly commercialized, often only the places and people with sufficient resources experience basketball to its highest extent. This leaves many eager and vibrant communities around the world feeling left out and without hope.
Our mission, therefore, is to build these basketball communities and the young athletes within them from the ground up, ensuring that more people around the world can fully experience the vast and life-changing possibilities basketball has to offer.
We see building basketball communities as a six-step process.
Resources: We start by laying the groundwork, supplying everything necessary for the game— courts, basketballs, proper footwear, and more—to ensure everyone can participate.
Building Life-Changing Coaches: We truly believe that quality coaches are the drivers of any potent basketball community, and that one quality coach can change thousands of young hoopers' lives. Our comprehensive coaching education teaches skills trainers, team coaches, and strength & conditioning coaches not only how to enhance skills and build proficiency on the court, but also foster personal growth, and equip athletes with mental resilience tools.
Inspiration: Through events and education, this step involves motivating more athletes and potential athletes to play, coaches to coach, and parents to allow and encourage participation.
Community Collaboration: We consult with local leaders to forge robust organizational structures such as leagues, training organizations, and court maintenance, lowering the barrier to entry and creating more jobs through basketball.
Pathway Creation: Work with partner organizations to guide top athletes toward higher levels of play and education (high school, college, or professional). We showcase success stories from within the community to demonstrate to younger athletes that dreams truly can become reality through hoops.
Ongoing Support & Documentation: We're in it for the long haul, providing unwavering support through the inevitable challenges and victories each community faces. Plus, we ensure to document each hoops culture to inspire others around the world, and provide perspective to those already in established hoops cultures!
In any given community, we may not be able to complete all six, but we're dedicated to filling in as many gaps as possible.