Youth Sports Camps

Thanks to a grant from the James B. and Melita A. McDonough Foundation, during the 2023-2024 year we were able to purchase equipment for Emmaus's Community Sports Camp program that serves youth in the Dubuque area. The program provides access to sport and character development clinic and camp opportunities in a fun and safe environment.

The camps serve children in grades K-12, from beginners to intermediate players, to improve their skills in basketball, soccer, running, and volleyball. Campers included boys and girls from public, private, and homeschools. In addition to skill development, the programs emphasize social-emotional development and soft skills, such as teamwork, integrity, humility, and leadership. Youth learn these important life skills through fun, cooperative games, as well as through counselor skits, feedback, and small group breakout sessions.

Additionally, the camps provide current Emmaus student-athletes opportunities to volunteer alongside their college coaches, while developing their skills and attitudes as servant-leaders.

Overall, the project contributes to Emmaus’ strategic objective to develop a robust athletic program, which connects with and impacts the Dubuque and surrounding communities.
Super Eagles Basketball Camp

The first-ever summer basketball camp at Emmaus featured 9 campers (2 girls and 7 boys) entering grades 3-8. The camp featured the use of our new youth basketball goals, which had been purchased with 2022-23 grant funding from the McDonough Foundation. These basketball goals worked exactly as intended, and allowed for younger campers to work on proper shooting technique and to experience success by making shots using correct technique!

Middle school boy makes a basketball layup
Junior Eagles Volleyball Camps

The inaugural girls’ volleyball camps were a success, tapping into a desire for character-based coaching and skill development in the community. The Junior Eagles camp served 11 middle-school girls, and 19 high school girls participated in the HS camp.

Thanks to the McDonough Grant, the coaches were able to purchase a set of Volley-Lite Training Volleyballs. These lighter volleyballs have less impact on the hands/arms and require less strength to propel the ball over the net. We are excited to see younger campers improve their technique, while experiencing greater success.

High School girls receive volleyball instruction
Super Eagles Soccer Camp

After two successful winter soccer clinics, this was the first summer soccer camp offered by Emmaus Athletics. A total of 16 elementary and middle school students participated. Two of the mini goals purchased with funds from the 2022-23 McDonough Grant were ideal for use during the camp’s week-long 3-on-3 tournament, as they are easy to set-up and age appropriate for elementary and middle school students.

Elementary school girls playing soccer outdoors
MLK Day Girls Basketball Clinic

Emmaus hosted a one-day, youth basketball clinic attended by 9 middle school and high school girls. The clinic focused on skill improvement in the areas of dribbling, passing/catching, and shooting form. This initial girls-only clinic for the program served as a trial for our coaching staff and players, and was extended to the Tri-State Christian School girls basketball program. The overall support and response from the basketball coaches at TSCS who attended the clinic was positive. The Emmaus clinic proved to be an excellent opportunity for the girls to work on skills in a fun, low-pressure environment, created by the encouragement and enthusiasm of the Emmaus women’s basketball players working at the clinic. 

Middle school girls doing basketball dribbling drills
Winter Indoor Soccer Clinics

The Winter Indoor Soccer Clinics were held on the following 4 Saturdays in January and February, 2024. This was the third year of the Emmaus Indoor Soccer Clinics, and a total of 72 participants attended, which was a 20% increase from the previous winter! Three clinics were held each day to appropriately serve kids in grades K-2, grades 3-5, and grades 6-8 in separate sessions. 

The soccer clinics focused on fundamental techniques taught through drills, fun games and scrimmages. The Emmaus coaches also performed educational skits to emphasize character development in the areas of friendship and thankfulness. 

Elementary soccer players pose for group photo with coaches

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