The Jerusalem International YMCA (JIY) officially opened its new state-of-the-art Sports Center, made possible by the generous support of Sylvan Adams as Dikembe Mutombo, International Ambassador for the NBA also addressed those in attendance.
“This is the most important and beautiful Y in the world,” said Adams when introduced on stage. “I’ve seen the powe of basketball and how sports can change lives,” declared Mutombo. The opening program included performances by YMCA sports instructors, the Jerusalem International YMCA Youth Choir, and the participation of special guest NBA Global Ambassador and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Dikembe Mutombo. Following the opening program, Mr. Mutombo joined the youth and coaches from the new Jr. NBA Jerusalem International YMCA League to tip-off the league’s draft and host a Jr. NBA youth basketball clinic.
In line with Mr. Adams’ strong belief in the power of inclusivity and sporting excellence, the 100,000 square foot Sylvan Adams Sports Center of the Jerusalem International YMCA exemplifies professional excellence, accessibility, inclusion and physical wellness. It is a place where social divides are shed at the door and everyone in the city of all ages and faiths can come to enjoy quality sports and fitness together in an atmosphere of harmony and acceptance.
The Sylvan Adams Sports Center will be the home of the new Jr. NBA Jerusalem International YMCA League, which will bring together 450 youth, ages 11-13 from Christian, Jewish, Muslim and other communities in an after-school basketball league. The program, which will see the youth compete on 30 teams each representing an NBA team, will include basketball instruction, competitive play, and life skills programming focused on cultural understanding, team-building and leadership. Each team will also receive corresponding NBA team-branded uniforms for their games.