WE ARE MORE THAN A TEAM
WE ARE FAMILY
Brooklyn Ballers was established in 2003 with the goal of providing, through the vehicle of organized basketball, discipline, structure, self-esteem, and wholesome physical activity to the young men and women of the communities in which they serve. Though the challenges facing less privileged youth in these communities are daunting, (i.e. poverty, gang culture/violence, childhood obesity, high unemployment), Brooklyn Ballers maintains that sports, when properly utilized, provides a unique tool for academic motivation, improved health and conflict resolution - plagues that have historically impacted urban neighborhoods. Over the last 16 years, the program has evolved and expanded to also reach parents and adults of the children within these communities. Along with the cornerstone sports and health programs, Brooklyn Ballers has added music, drama, counseling, and tutoring to the services offered to its participants. This expansion has allowed Brooklyn Ballers to affect positive and vast change in whole communities. The program has changed many lives, but the work has just begun.
Coach Pat and Coach Groove, Brooklyn Ballers in Rwanda, Africa
What Brooklyn Ballers Brings to
MS 394 and Crown Heights
Brooklyn Ballers is so much more than an “afterschool program”. It transforms communities and changes lives with a structured and simple approach to village engagement. Brooklyn Ballers program offers vital and customized components of extracurricular school programs such as sports, tutoring, music, drama, the arts, mentoring, and counseling These are tools that support positive social development and interaction, encourage self-identity and personal growth, promote a healthy lifestyle and build skills that encourage academic achievement in the school. Brooklyn Ballers takes a much broader look at community engagement. The program targets the malleable minds and behaviors of adolescents, as well as the parents and families of the children that they serve. Brooklyn Ballers seeks to use a single educational building as a means to unite a village, to inspire a community.
COACH GILL, COACH CARTAGENA, & COACH PAT & JHS 218 STUDENTS
Brooklyn Family Day
Every year BROOKLYN Ballers does 2-3 culminating Family Day Events. These events seek to connect the families of our students
to the school community as they showcase their newly acquired skills via performance and competition. There are performances by other organizations, music, food trophies and awards for all involved. Memories are created to last a lifetime.
Music and Drama
Brooklyn Ballers also offers music, drama and arts outlets for students and parents to express themselves. Active and frequent self-expression is paramount to healthy minds and self-esteem. Allowing individuals to express their individuality builds confidence like nothing else. Brooklyn Ballers offers that platform. Throughout the week, instructors provide students and adults with the skills necessary to perform at the highest level possible. Again, the ultimate goal of this process is to encourage a spirit of accountability within our students, and bringing joy and self-worth to the adults in the program. Young Hip Hop artists and writers, musicians, and DJs teach students the tricks of their respective trades, while encouraging freedom and discipline through their artistry. Brooklyn Ballers also offers a platform for young playwrights actors and stage design artists. They will be encouraged to write and collaboratively create their own personal, original works while studying the classic stylings of playwrights such as Lorraine Hansberry, Ntozake Shange, and August Wilson.
SENSEI JACKIE’S MARTIAL ARTS TEAM
JHS 218 STUDENTS
Brooklyn Ballers provides tutoring and homework help for each student that participates in the program. For one hour each day, all students are provided a snack and start their homework. Brooklyn Ballers strategically hires teachers from the schools that they serve, as this helps to build a true extended-school-day program. These teachers are already familiar with the learning styles, strengths, and needs of the children in the program. Through the individual attention they receive, the students are amenable to receiving support to remediate their academically challenged areas, and learn methods to improve. In this model, called Strategic Tutoring (define and provide source), strategies for learning how to learn and perform are taught to students while they receive help with their daily class assignments.
Mental Health is an issue at the forefront of today’s social and political issues, but too often the people living in the under-privileged urban areas of our nation are forgotten about when this is discussed. Brooklyn Ballers has implemented confidential professional counseling into the weekly schedule to help students and adults deal with the personal issues they experience. The philosophy is simple: we all need someone we trust to talk to sometimes. The program has professional certified counselors on-site weekly to sit down and speak with the program’s participants. The counseling service will be offered on an “opt-out” basis, wherein students will automatically receive this service unless their parent chooses to decline. A major objective of the program is to help reduce the stigma prevalent in many inner-city families within our communities regarding mental health care and maintenance. With regard to mental and physical well-being, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
COACH GILL, COACH CARTAGENA, AND JHS 218 CHAMPS