IT TAKES A VILLAGE: Residents stage basketball camp to take back their community from gang violence

By Kareem Minnis

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Englerston residents are determined to take their back community from gang violence through a basketball camp, according to organizers Wilmin Noel and Dion McPhee.

The camp took place this week Saturday on Englerston Park for boys and men between the ages of eight to 20 years old.

WIlmin Noel told Eyewitness News his plans are to engage young men with the art of basketball and reduce their chances of falling prey to gang violence.

Noel said he was fortunate to be a part of a similar camp growing up, where he learned valuable lessons that molded him into a successful man.

“It starts from home,” Noel said.

“It’s such a passion for us to do this. A lot of these young kids don’t have fathers or people to go back to,” he added.

Noel further said the camp is not just for young men to learn or play Basketball, but to teach them lessons they can use in other aspects such as spirituality, and education.

The group plans to get businesses and other organizations involved to allow the participants to network and have more opportunities.

Another organizer, CJ Walker said he was also given the opportunity to learn and grow through the Basketball camp he attended with Noel.

Walker further said the camp is geared towards mentoring young men and providing them with useful skills and knowledge that can be used throughout their lives.

“For me it was a way out,” Walker said.

“I was able to create bonds to this very day. It’s very important for me to give back,” he added.