For five days this past August, young, aspiring basketball stars perfected their skills at the 7th annual Fundamentals Basketball Camp, founded and run by Jake Mount and his co-counselor John Winkler.
Passionate basketball players themselves, the two 19-year-olds taught kids how to improve their ball handling, shooting, passing, defense, and most importantly sportsmanship.
Jake started his camp off with stretches and warm-ups for the players, then took them through different drills to work on their basketball skills. The day finished with a game of tag to get the kids’ excess energy out!
In the chaos of flying balls and scuffing sneakers, it was easy to tell that the campers thoroughly enjoyed themselves. When asked if they had fun, one camper replied, “Yeah, but I sweat my butt off!”
For Jake, this isn’t any ordinary camp, it also serves as a reminder of his childhood friend, Gage.
Honoring a Friend
When Jake was nine, his friend Gage died of cancer. “Being so young, I didn’t know how bad it really was for him until he passed away. He was always into superheroes, and he would embody a superhero when facing his disease. I wanted to do anything in my power to help.”
Jake realized he enjoyed teaching kids in his neighborhood how to play basketball and with the help of his mom, Barbara, he created Fundamentals Basketball Camp to help raise money in Gage’s honor. “This camp is a way for me to keep his memory going and make sure everyone knows about him and knows how to get involved.”
Jake chose to donate all the money he made from the camp to CCA and has been graciously giving every year since its inception. “Last year we brought in a total of $4,500, and overall we’ve raised a little over $10,000!” His donations help CCA prescribe joy to kids facing serious illness.
Planning for the Future
As Jake’s senior year is about to start, he’s already thinking ahead to how he can continue Fundamentals Basketball Camp from college. He knows it might not be possible for him to do it every summer, but he has a few campers who might take on his leadership role. He hopes the next generation of kids will continue to honor the memory of Gage.
Personal fundraisers like Jakes are important to our mission. If you have an idea for a fundraiser, let us know or learn more about the various ways you can get involved.