BRAMPTON – There is a trio of well-known local basketball stars who are working as instructors at the Aspire for Higher Elite Basketball camp as they get ready for their upcoming basketball seasons.
Among the list of coaches are Freddy Appiah, who played in the National Basketball League of Canada this past season, and Jordan Clennon and Shaquille Keith, who have completed their university careers and are looking to continue to play professionally either in Canada or overseas.
“Instructing at the camp helps my own game,” said Keith, a 22-year-old 6-foot-6 forward. A former star at Fletcher’s Meadow Secondary School, Keith played one year at Cape Breton University before transferring to Kilgore College in Dallas, Texas.
Clennon, who said he enjoys the opportunity to giving back to the community, is a graduate of St. Edmund Campion. He has also played basketball at Missouri State University West Plains and most recently the University of Winnipeg.
Appiah, who grew up in Brampton, is a certified teacher in Ontario and has coached the senior boys’ basketball team at Ascension of Our Lord Eagles in Malton, his alma mater. Appiah was the No. 11 selection of the 2014 NBL draft by the Moncton Miracles and got a chance to play for the Brampton A’s for part of the season.
“I really enjoyed playing for Brampton, my hometown team,” he said. However, he ended up leaving the A’s to play for the Halifax Rainmen, where he had more opportunity to get playing time. He ended the season on injury reserve and was not involved in the game seven brawl between the Rainmen and Windsor Express, which resulted in the Rainmen forfeiting the league championship series.
Camp founder Abena Addo is in her third year of running the program. She started Aspire for Higher in 2013 after receiving a grant from the Ontario Summer Company program for young entrepreneurs. At the time she was playing basketball at McGill University.
She is now working on a Masters of Civil Engineering at the University of Toronto and was the captain of the women’s basketball team there this past season. Her goal was to create an affordable camp for youngsters aged 5 to 15 and continues with that philosophy.
Camps cost $110 per week and there are subsidies available for those in financial need. The programs include a youth camp (ages 5 to 8), junior training camp aged 9 to 12 and advanced camp ages 13 to 15. Those are all co-ed. This is the second time she is offering an all girls camp from July 20 to 24.
Remaining camps are July 13 to 17, July 20 to 24, July 27 to July 31 and August 4 to 7, running at two locations Notre Dame and St. Roch Secondary.
New this year is a four-week program offered with the Dufferin-Peel District School Board that combines basketball with leadership at Cardinal Leger, that is sold out.
For registration information go to: www.a4hsports.ca
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