ELIZAVILLE — Adam Slone, founder of Slone Partners, has overseen the recruitment of thousands of professionals into the medical diagnostics and laboratory testing industries since the company’s creation in 2000.
This summer, he launched a brand new recruitment effort — the country’s first sleep-away tennis camp for underserved youth.
Life Serve Youth Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded by Slone and based in New York City, offers the first overnight tennis camp in the United States that provides exceptional tennis training and personal development opportunities for youth with limited financial resources.
The foundation provided a free 14-day overnight tennis camp for children ages 12-17 with a demonstrated potential for tennis. The camp focused on children from New York City, Boston, the Capital Region and the rural areas in between who otherwise may have few opportunities to participate in intensive sports training or attend a sleep-away camp.
“Every company looking for talent, no matter the industry, has a short list of qualities it’s looking for and at the top is always a team player: Can this person build a team, play on a team, lead the team, make the team proud?” Sports are a surefire way to acquire team skills,” said Slone. “World-class tennis instruction, talented youth and high expectations are our formula for success. Our goal is for kids to build up enough internal resources to not just become strong personally, but to experience a new world in which they can accomplish whatever they put their minds to.”
Leadership training, cooking classes, a visit to Katchkie Farm in Kinderhook, a nutrition course, environmental awareness activities that included a community service project at Scotland Farm at Round Ball Mountain Preserve, recreation and life skills instruction complemented the tennis training. Also unique to the program was the Give Back Program, in which campers donated funds they raised to nonprofit organizations in Columbia County. After a brief application process, campers chose seven organizations.
Fifty eight youth participated in the inaugural camp held Aug. 11-25. The foundation partnered with Camp Eagle Hill, an American Camp Association-accredited facility in Elizaville.
“Our camp was delighted to achieve its goals during our first year. The kids and all involved had a truly transformative experience. We are already excited about the 2017 camp,” Slone said.
“I couldn’t be more proud of the program we provided and the kids who participated. We had some really talented tennis players, but more importantly kids who truly appreciated being away from home to participate in the full camp experience,” said Shari Franks, former recreation director for the town of Chatham, who serves as program coordinator for Life Serve. “Many thanks to Adam, our board of directors and our staff for making this happen.”