NBA and Alaska Milk team up in shaping future Basketball champions By John O. Villavicencio

Posted October 31, 2013 by admin. Filed under News.

IMG_0134Nurturing young minds and bodies through nutritious and delicious milk products, Alaska Milk Corporation continues to go the extra mile by holding special sports clinics to help young ones develop their skills in various sports. This time around, the company is proud to hold a special basketball clinic in cooperation with the US Embassy in Manila and the Jr. NBA, which benefitted the youth of underprivileged communities from two residential care facilities of DSWD – Marillac Hills and Haven for Children.

Extending its care across all segments, Alaska Milk has turned what would be a regular sunny Saturday morning into one that was filled with excitement and glee as young basketball enthusiasts lined up to participate in the highly-anticipated sports clinic.

A commitment to health and wellness

Following the commitment in promoting an active and healthy lifestyle, Alaska Milk aimed to highlight the importance of sports in youth development. For this event, two residential care facilities from the DSWD– Marillac Hills and Haven for Children were chosen to be part of this special basketball clinic.

IMG_9901Masaya po dito,” smiles 16-year-old Mary Grace Deguin, her shirt soaked in sweat after all the training exercises, she adds, “Ang sarap maglaro kasama ng mga friends ko.” then scurried away to join her friends from Marillac Hills for another game of basketball. Mary Grace is just one of the many children who were given the chance to play and develop their basketball skills through the basketball clinic organized by the US Embassy in Manila, Jr. NBA and Alaska Milk Corporation.

Basketball greats make the time to lead and inspire

Guided by NBA Legend Ron Harper, the children from Marillac Hills and Haven for Children were able to practice basic basketball drills and learn important values such as teamwork and sportsmanship. Aside from NBA Legend Ron Harper, the children also experienced being mentored by NBA Asia Coach Sefu Bernard along with his Jr. NBA team and PBA legend and AlaskaBasketball Power Camp Director, Jojo Lastimosa.

Hindi po ako masyado nakakalaro nito. Minsan lang kapag nagkakayayaan, minsan kasi wala rin kaming bola,” says Joshua of Haven for Children, who enjoyed a glass of Alaska Milk right before he joined his friends for another game. Bernard on the other hand, observed, “Dapat pala matangkad ka na bata para abot mo yung ring,” as he watched Harper and the other players practice 3-point shooting during the break

IMG_7016Ron Harper, a versatile player who was part of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles Clippers, Chicago Bulls, and the LA Lakers, is best known for being a former point guard for the Chicago Bulls during Michael Jordan’s heyday. Other career highlights include being part of the Lakers championship team in 2001.

This former Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers point guard was delighted for the opportunity to help shape and inspire future champions saying, “This is a very, very awesome event and the children had fun.” The five-time NBA champion encouraged young Filipinos to continue reaching for their dreams and reminded them that hard work is always the key. On top of that, Harper wholeheartedly thanked his Filipino fans for their support throughout the years.

“Ron Harper was supposed to come for the NBA Global Games along with the other legends. But we asked him to come a little earlier for this basketball clinic. Ron has been great, a very good supporter of all of our activities in Asia. It’s his first time in the Philippines, so we’re happy to have him,” shares Carlo Singson, NBA Asia Country Manager.

A continuing commitment

IMG_9272Aside from this basketball clinic,Alaska Milk and the NBA are delighted to share that they will organize more basketball activities in the future. And of course, the Jr. NBA – Alaska program kicks off in January 2014 for series of training camps in key cities nationwide. The Jr. NBA – Alaska program, now on its 4th year, culminates in the selection of the top 10 young players who will form the Jr. NBA All-Star RP team.

Alaska Basketball Power Camp Director, Jojo Lastimosa was happy to share his expertise in this popular sport to young children. “We in Alaska Milk are happy to be part of the US Embassy program. The kids had a good time. I think that’s what matters,” he adds.

Lastimosa gladly shared essential pointers with the children like developing self-discipline, “You have to stay disciplined whether in sports or in things you decide to do. Discipline is really important. The kids should stay away from vices and they should always strive to keep a healthy diet.”

IMG_9696Everyone who participated in the event were also able to enjoy delicious servings of Alaska Chocolate Powdered Milk drink, which has Lakas Energy Builder, giving them the energy needed to last through high impact basketball drills. Alaska Milk believes that it providesthe steps to help children achieve their full potential.

Based on the 7th National Nutrition Survey in 2008 by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI), about two out of 10 Filipino children are overweight. “At least 16 million Filipinos ages 20 years old and above are overweight. A high percentage of the adult population has low levels of physical activity in all domains: occupation, non-occupation, leisure, and transportation.”

To prevent someone from developing an obesity problem, research suggests encouraging children to engage in more physical activities like walking, running, dancing, swimming, and playing sports in and out of school.“We spent an hour and 30 minutes to teach them basketball, as a means of giving back to the community,” says Dicky Bachmann, team manager of the Alaska Aces. “Basically we help them, and to avoid being a couch potato, we teach them to be more active.”

“We can help prevent malnutrition by eating the right kind and right amount of food – remember, eat a variety of foods every day,” reminds the FNRI to prevent cases of malnutrition all over the country.

IMG_9340Alaska Milk Corporation encourages everyone to fight against various forms of malnutrition by taking the right amount of food and keep in mind the importance of drinking milk to have enough energy to get through each day. The company continues to remain tireless and unfazed in its commitment to help provide good nutrition as well as promote positive values among young children. Even at a young age, children need to learn the value of staying fit and active as well as developing an appreciation for healthy eating.

Visit www.alaskapowercamp.com/basketball for camp schedules and more details.