Updated: April 12, 2021 10:58 PM
Created: April 12, 2021 09:46 PM
Starks Academy and the Northland Youth Basketball Association has been turning out some of the best and brightest basketball players the Northland has to offer. And thanks to a generous donation from Essentia Health, even more kids can play the game.
A $5,000 check was delivered Monday afternoon to the NYBA, who pride themselves in never turning away a kid who can't afford to play.
"This check is going to allow us to offer low-cost programming and also just help folks whether they play basketball or not," says Dyami Starks. He founded the program and pushes players to get involved in different volunteer opportunities. Starks says this donation helps him create a monthly community service plan for the kids to join.
"We don't have to worry about breaking even or finding our bottom-line costs," says Starks. "Instead we can just get our kids out there, making some impact and making ourselves known in the community."
"We realize that things like education and access to good food, high quality food, and housing security, and involvement in community activities like sports has a lot to do with health and vitality of our community," says Dr. Michael VanScoy with Essentia. "So we know it's smart for us to be partners with community-based organizations like Northland Youth Basketball Association,"
"Basketball is a unifier," says Starks. "And the support we've gotten from Essentia, and hopefully the support we'll continue to get, is gonna allow us to connect these kids of all backgrounds, all races, all sexes, it does not matter. Starks Academy is a place for everybody and we want to make that known."
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