By Chloe Burkart and Ashlee Green

The eighth annual free basketball camp hosted by P.R.O.M.I.S.E. (Protecting and Restoring the Order of Mankind with the Initiative of Serving Elders) will take place from July 25 to 27 at Perry High School.

Presented by Jakim Donaldson, a native Pittsburgher and professional basketball player with the Pro B league ESSM Le Portal in France, the camp is open to boys and girls ages eight through 18. In addition to learning basketball skills, campers are taught about teamwork, conflict resolution, and living together in a diverse community. Camp is held daily from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Lunch and a snack are provided.

Only 100 spots are available. Registration forms are available at YouthPlaces and Dave’s Barber Shop in the Northside. Participants can also sign up on site. To comply with grant requirements, applicants must attach proof of income to registration forms.

According to its website, P.R.O.M.I.S.E. is “committed to stopping violence before it begins.” The organization provides “intervention programs and activities to help curtail, prevent, and decrease violence among our youth.” In addition to the basketball camp, P.R.O.M.I.S.E. coordinates an annual memorial gathering for lost loved ones in the Allegheny Commons Park – West. This year’s event will take place on August 4 and feature poetry, singing, food, and speeches on nonviolent communication and conflict resolution.

“If we don’t stop the violence within our own communities, how do we expect anyone else to respect that?,” said Mary Adams, Donaldson’s aunt.

James’ nephew, Jehru Donaldson, was killed in an attempted carjacking in 2007. Jay Donaldson, father of Jakim and Jehru, founded P.R.O.M.I.S.E. in response to his son’s death.

For more information on P.R.O.M.I.S.E. and its current initiatives, call 412-973-9635 or visit www.promiseonthemove.com.