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Sat, Dec 20, 2014

Blue Raiders take part in Special Kids’ Camp Ability

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Blue Raiders take part in Special Kids’ Camp Ability | blue raiders, special kids, basketball, camp

MTSU men’s basketball players took part at the Special Kids’ Camp Ability last week. Photo submitted

During the past few seasons, the MTSU men’s basketball team has played in the NCAA and NIT tournaments.

However, one of the biggest thrills comes when the Blue Raiders help out in the community. Last Wednesday, the team and the cheerleaders visited the Special Kids organization as part of the Camp Ability summer camp.

The Murfreesboro-based Christian, non-profit organization was started back in 1998 as way to help kids with special needs receive needed therapeutic rehabilitation and professional nursing services. Back when it started 16 years ago, it only had one kid. Since then, the group has helped more than 2,600 kids from 18 counties in the midstate.

Each year, the Special Kids puts together the Camp Ability summer camp for those children with special needs ranging from ages 6 to 25. It is held during two different sessions in June and July at North Boulevard Church of Christ. Since being created in 2006, the Blue Raider basketball team has appeared every single year.

“Betty (Davis) and I have been involved with Special Kids for years, and we have always loved the opportunity to get involved with the program,” MTSU men’s basketball head coach Kermit Davis said. “It is a fantastic chance for our players to get connected to the community, and it is always a very rewarding experience. Our returning players look forward to this every year, and our returners understand that and are thrilled to get the chance to get involved. It is a lot of fun for the players.”

Director of Camp Ability of Special Kids Brandon Deal added: “It is such an honor to have them come out to camp. It is truly a highlight of our summer. It is so exciting for our campers to get to play basketball with the same players they watch from the stands.”

The campers got to experience being an actual MTSU basketball player by going through passing drills, dribbling drills, defensive drills, shooting and they even got the chance to learn how to dunk the basketball. Also, the MTSU cheerleaders taught the campers some of its popular cheers.

“This is one of the events that the kids have looked forward to all summer,” Deal said. “This is not the first time for the Blue Raiders. Davis has brought the entire team out to Camp Ability for all eight years of its existence.”

Davis believes doing community events like this one will help bring the team together, especially the newcomers to the program.

“For the eight newcomers who have never been involved they will learn that it is just as rewarding of an experience for them as it is for the kids,” Davis said.

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Members Opinions:
August 06, 2014 at 4:28pm
I think it is an amazing feat that the Blue Raiders basketball team of MTSU is taking time out to go volunteer at the Special Kids Organization. The team has been participating in this activity for 8 years, which is how long the non-profit organization has been standing, and the kids who are in the program not only get to learn what it is like to be a Blue Raider for a day, but the players gain an experience with the kids, which makes them feel as if they have done something for the greater good. I have a friend who is a Blue Raider and he told me of his experience. He stated that seeing the joy in those kids’ eyes was a true reward for him, and knowing that he was able to make them smile, even just for a day, made him feel as if he was on top of the world. Knowing that MTSU does participate in these types of activities, and helping with non-profit organizations makes me extremely proud to be a student at MTSU. I am sure the Blue Raiders ball players and cheerleaders truly enjoyed themselves, but not only that, the children who were able to experience this activity profited in happiness. Bringing joy to a child is not only rewarding, but knowing this is an experience these children who suffer different disabilities will continue to remember, makes the reward completely priceless.


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