With Kiefer Ravena, Aljon Mariano, and Kobe Paras as part of their credentials, Jr. NBA Philippines, presented by Alaska Milk Corporation, announced the nationwide program’s 2018 tip-off last weekend (January 13-14), at the Don Bosco Technical Institute, in Makati.
Led by NBA Philippines Managing Director Carlo Singson, Alaska Managing Director Marco Bertacca, and several former basketball stars-turned-coaches, Willie Miller, Tony Dela Cruz, and Ewon Arayi, Jr. NBA Philippines announced that the campaign will go even farther and deeper into the communities and key cities, thus, sticking to the mission of both brands in developing aspiring basketball players, both boys and girls, in all aspects of sports in order to become better individuals overall. Together, Jr. NBA/WNBA and Alaska Milk are promoting the S.T.A.R values, or Sportsmanship, Teamwork, a positive Attitude, and Respect.
Since 2007, over 90,000 youth and coaches have become part of Jr. NBA Philippines. The target of the program this season, though, is to reach out to 250,000 participants and 900 coaches all over the country.
“For the past ten years, Jr. NBA Philippines has established itself as a platform to improve the youth basketball experience and promote an active and healthy lifestyle among the Filipino youth,” said Singson. “Together with Alaska, we are committed to providing proper guidelines to how the game should be played and taught to more youth, coaches, and parents in the country.”
2016’s Jr. WNBA Coach of the Year Ewon Arayi considers this year as another opportunity to further empower Filipina ballers. “As a Women’s Basketball coach, sobrang na-inspire ako sa mga coaches natin ngayon, kasi this year talagang they are really pushing it hard na magkaroon talaga ng importance yung women players dito sa Pilipinas,” she shared.
Meanwhile, two-time PBA MVP Willie Miller is excited to impart his vast experience to young athletes, having played basketball since his younger days in Olongapo City. “From the time I played basketball, every time I see kids on the streets playing basketball, I’d go out to them; tinuturuan ko ng basics,” he explained. “Masarap ‘yung feeling na nakikita mo yung kids na natututo, na nagkakaroon ng knowledge about basketball, not just playing, playing. And right now, siguro ‘yung opportunity ko na ‘to is makatulong ako more sa mga kids, kumbaga to reach their dreams; to follow their dreams.”
With a series of camps, skills challenges, league play, and outreach of events from January through May, expect another big turnout for Jr. NBA Philippines, which will be concluded by the selection of 16 Jr. NBA All-Stars (eight boys, eight girls), who will be sent overseas on an NBA experience with other Jr. NBA All-Stars from Southeast Asia.
Registration is free, open to boys and girls (ages 10-14), as well as coaches. Visit www.jrnba.asia/philippines.