Rising Stars Inc. Allows Students to Grow into Valuable Community Members
For the leadership team of Rising Stars Inc., giving students the opportunity to grow in a safe environment is fundamental to their core mission. The organization’s basketball programs are a stepping stone to greater awareness and understanding for youth in the New York City area.
Q: What are the life skills that the Rising Stars camps and clinics have introduced to students?
Rising Stars Inc.: Education is paramount in our programs. We collect report cards and meet with teachers and parents to help us in our work. After about a year on our teams and in our programs, we believe that we are qualified to make recommendations for the child’s best interests. If a child needs tutoring or help with homework, we assist in this process as well.
Q: What makes Rising Stars Inc. different from other youth sports programs in the U.S.?
Rising Stars Inc.: We believe that the best way to predict the future is to create it. We strive to make that future better, one child at a time. We are different in that we get to know our kids as a family member. That allows us to identify their needs at an early age and also be aware of the ones that are most at risk. If a child needs a private education, it’s there.
Q: From your perspective, why is your organization such a powerful force in society today?
Rising Stars Inc.: Our leaders and coaches acknowledge the problem of underserved kids in the New York City area, many of whom are dropping out of high school or moving on to college without the proper educational tools. The rate of at-risk minority children in New York in terms of graduating from high school college-ready has been as low as 15 percent.
Q: What other entities are assisting you in this great endeavor?
Rising Stars Inc.: In collaboration with the YMCA, we are working with a group from that population to help improve percentages and shape the future of today’s youth.
Q: What is the fundamental mission of your organization?
Rising Stars Inc.: Our mission is to utilize the game of basketball as the vehicle to promote education, reinforce values and provide our youth with a safe environment to play, learn and grow. The ultimate goal of our programming is to provide structured, youth-centered activities which can grant participants the necessary mindset for academic and athletic success. As a result, we seek to lower the ever-growing poverty rate, promote healthy living and concentrate solely on the positive aspects of life.
Q: How do your coaches go about introducing these skills?
Rising Stars Inc.: We use the power of teamwork as a conduit to mentor, teach, train, empower and enrich the lives of the youths in our communities. We have designed our classes and camps to encourage academic success, leadership skills and to build constructive relationships within the family, community and society as a whole.