What We Do

Sports are an important part of our culture in the United States. This is especially true in Southern Arizona’s Wildcat country! It is commonly understood that sports build character and develop lifelong healthy habits in youth, yet access to professional sports instruction is often limited to families who can afford to pay hundreds of dollars for camps, clinics and team participation. Joseph Blair started the Arizona Basketball Academy in 2000, in an attempt to offer professional basketball instruction to youth that otherwise may not have the opportunity due to economic or social limitations The mission of the Blair Charity Group is to develop the youth and young adults of Southern Arizona through accessible programs, sports camps, clinics and leagues that build leadership, life skills and community engagement.

Our premier program, The Arizona Basketball Academy, ABA, promotes the social and physical well-being of boys and girls ages 9-18. 2017 is the 17th year that the ABA has been offered free of charge in Southern Arizona, serving more than 1,000 youth annually. The ABA and it’s founder, Joseph Blair, have received numerous awards and accolades for our impact in the community including: The commissioner’s award, Mayor Bob Walkup proclaimed June 23rd as Joseph Blair Day and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords placed mention of the ABA and its impact on the community into the library of Congress. ABA is offered as a week-long camp each summer and a series of one day clinics throughout Southern Arizona. ABA focuses on basketball skills as well as building social, leadership and life skills.

Our professional coaching staff rivals that of programs costing thousands of dollars to attend. This years coaching staff included UA Players Gabe York, Parker Jackson-Cartwright, Kaleb Tarczewski, Reshea Bristol and Ali Gloyd.

Primary Goals:

  • Teach ways to maintain physical optimization to ward off obesity and promote overall physical balance
  • Teach and cultivate teamwork
  • Teach and cultivate responsibility
  • Encourage social interaction within diverse economic, social, and geographical groups

I am writing because my son was fortunate enough to be able to take part in the Arizona Basketball Academy. I am very grateful that you put these camps together for those kids whose families cannot afford to send them. My son loves basketball as much as I did as a child but unlike him never had anyone to show me the basic fundamentals of basketball or to tell me how great I was at it and how I could possibly make my dreams a reality. My parents had four children and struggled to make ends meet so the furthest I ever got was to the local “Boys and Girls Club” to play with the other neighborhood kids or just played in my yard. I dreamed of being a NBA star but because I didn’t know what I know now didn’t pursue my dreams. College wasn’t really an option for me I barely made it through high school. I love my parents they did the best they could for me. They too were raised in a time when you worked hard to survive and didn’t have those options like college or pursuing their dreams.

I appreciate that your camps not only show our young men and women the basic fundamentals but also that you take the time from your busy schedule and life to be there in person and play with them, you have no idea what that meant to my son. You were all he could talk about for days. I like that you also take the time to talk to them and let them know that nothing is beyond their reach and they can be anything they put their minds to! He has dreams of being a professional ball player. I know that with programs like yours it will help many kids believe in themselves and reach their dreams. You certainly moved my son. Again, I just wanted to take a moment to thank you for your dedication to the children and being an inspiration to them. I know that what you told my son that day at camp will forever be in his head and heart and help him achieve his goals.

Respectfully,
Damian Nogales
Team Lead/Admin. Assistant
La Frontera Irt/New Life