Among the variety of activities and ideas introduced to youth at the National Youth Sport Program is a singular message: education.
Hosted by the West Virginia University College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences, the camp helps kids improve physical fitness through sports and field trips. Activities include volleyball, flag football, swimming, softball and soccer but NYSP also offers a strong educational focus, including sessions about drug awareness, career opportunities, self-defense and yoga.
“NYSP is the best kept secret in the county,” said Steve Brannon, community liaison. “The camp has been in operation for 23 years, but many people still haven’t heard of it. It provides everything, lunch, transportation and enrichment activities thanks to generous support from WVU, Monongalia County Board of Education, City of Morgantown and some very kind community donors.”
Brannon said although the camp offers a variety of sports, the games don’t focus on winners and losers.
“NYSP is different,” he said. “They really learn about sports because they get instruction about the game. The focus is not on competition.”
Each year, area sponsors provide everything from transportation, books, backpacks and tickets to events. This year campers will hit the road for a Pittsburgh Pirates game, all expenses paid, with game tickets provided by the Pirates organization.
“We rely on contributions from groups and individuals,” said Dana Brooks, CPASS dean and NYSP project administrator. “We couldn’t operate without our sponsors.”
He added, “NYSP has served thousands of campers. We are now seeing the kids of former campers. Kids take a positive message away from the camp and use that message in their own lives.”
The camp is a result of year-round planning, according to Brannon.
Camp activities take place on the WVU campus Shell Building, Coliseum and Natatorium. All equipment is provided at no charge to the campers. This year, campers reported on June 25 and will attend activities through July 23.
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CONTACT: Kimberly Cameon, College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences