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Vernon national team pro hosts girls-only basketball camp

Cassandra Brown to host camp at Vernon Christian School Dec. 27-29 for girls in Grades 5-9
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Vernon’s Cassandra Brown, a professional basketball player in Australia and member of Canada’s women’s team, will host a three-day camp for girls in Grades 5-9 Tuesday to Thursday, Dec. 27-29, at Vernon Christian School. (Contributed)

Female basketball enthusiasts can have fun over Christmas and improve their skills learning from a member of Canada’s national women’s team.

Vernon’s Cassandra Brown, home after her professional season in Australia, will be hosting a three-day all girls basketball camp over the holidays at Vernon Christian School. The camp will run from Tuesday to Thursday, Dec. 27-29, for girls in Grades 5-9.

Brown is passionate about sharing her knowledge of basketball but more importantly, instilling confidence in young female athletes and raising their self esteem.

“It’s bigger than basketball,” said Brown, 30, a 6-foot-2 big guard-small forward. “I want to teach them skills but I also want to build their confidence and make them feel good about themselves.”

Case in point: the young daughter of a well-known Vernon businessman.

After finishing up her latest season in Australia this summer, Brown opted to take the European season off and come back home to spend time with family and friends. From there, the universe connected Brown with local community supporter On Ouch, owner of The Rice Box, who reached out to her to see if she could help his daughter who hit a road block over the summer.

“She was struggling with her confidence on the court, and Cassandra came in the picture, now my daughter is a different kid,” said Ouch. “Only a few games into the season, I see a new kid. A kid with a lot of confidence on the floor and talking more on the court and she’s only in Grade 9 on the senior team at W.L. Seaton.”

For someone who made a huge positive impact on his daughter’s life, Ouch suggested Brown do the same for other young girls in our community. Ouch convinced Brown to put on the three-day basketball camp over the Christmas break to inspire young girls in the community.

“Young girls in our community really need someone like Brown to look up to especially at this vulnerable age,” said Ouch. “Brown has been through it all and her stories can help the girls relate to help build their confidence.”

Since graduating from Clarence Fulton in 2010, basketball has taken Brown on a journey that is one for the books.

After a standout career at the University of Portland, Brown propelled herself onto the professional basketball scene and hasn’t looked back since. Heading into her eighth season as a pro, the overseas vet continues to chase her dreams and is hoping to help others chase theirs as well.

Brown holds an extensive resumé including Canadian Senior Women’s National Team, NCAA State Farm 3 Point Champion, and most recently named MVP of the Australian NBL’s Mount Gambier Pioneers.

Since graduating from the University of Portland in 2015, Brown has played professionally in Greece, Sweden, Poland, Luxembourg, Slovakia, Australia and a handful of other countries.

Brown is not only well decorated on the court, but off the court as well. Hosting clinics in Italy and Australia, counselling at Division 1 and NBA camps, and training local talent during the off-season, Brown has a lot of experience mentoring the youth.

In between her international pursuits, Brown has always remained passionate about empowering youth athletes, in particular, girls.

“I want to show them that if I can do it, they can do it too,” says Brown. “If I can inspire even one girl, that’s a win for me.”

For more camp details, and/or to register for the camp, visit cbelitetraining.com. Grade 5, 6 and 7 girls will be on the court from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Grade 8 and 9 girls will take part from 1:30-3:30 p.m.

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roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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