Loseni Kamara

Profile Loseni Kamara, Rising Stars Scholar/Athlete: A Success Story


Fall 2012 Grade 7 Honor Roll

Loseni Kamara was first introduced to Rising Stars as a player via its association with Gimme Five director and Rising Stars Team NYC coach Donald Francois. Coach Francois was concerned for Loseni's immediate welfare and saw Rising Stars as a vehicle for making an difference in Loseni's daily life.

Loseni's mother Hajah, a native of Africa had fled here to escape the civil unrest and threats to her family there. Hajah came upon equally difficult times here and found herself and her four siblings struggling to survive. She was living in a homeless shelter for abused women and came to Coach Francois for help and guidance. Coach Francois agreed to become Loseni's legal guardian and do his best to provide the opportunities to succeed Hajah would not be able to provide. Francois saw that Loseni needed to find an environment more conducive to learning then the public schools and the streets. He asked Rising Stars to try and locate a school away from the immediate risks and distractions Loseni faced daily. He felt that if Loseni were put into a different educational environment he could excel academically. Loseni loved basketball .It was a constant in his life. Rising Stars put him on teams and enrolled him in its yearly clinics and camps. It also pushed for his admission to LuHi as a 7th grader contingent on his maintaining a passing GPA along with the promise of tutoring and any other support he would need to stay enrolled.

This fall Loseni met and exceeded everyone's expectations except his own. He passed all his grades and made honor roll. He also made the LuHi basketball team.

Rising Stars helped me to believe in myself. They gave me a chance to show what I can do when others were telling me what I cannot do

Below, LuHi Admissions essay as written by Loseni with the help of Rising Stars volunteer student tutor Ariel Feildman.

"My name is Loseni Kamara, I am 12 years old. I was born in N'Zerekore Africa and live in the Bronx, NY. I like basketball and I love to play with Rising Stars. I like basketball because it's fun and LOVE Rising Stars for many other reasons. Basketball is a big part of my life for many reasons. I like being with other kids and traveling to tournaments. I have gone to Florida, New Jersey, and Maryland to play. When I travel I meet other players and new people. Basketball has also given me a way to improve myself in school and it keeps me out of trouble. I want to succeed in school and maybe get a scholarship to college. Rising Stars gets me motivated to do well in school because If I don't they will not allow me to play until I do. If I continue to do well Rising Stars will get me a chance to attend a private school next year! Basketball taught me how to work hard to learn new things. In practice I work hard to learn new moves or plays. Rising Stars teaches me to do the same when I am in class. Basketball is a big part of my life; I hope it will be a part of my future. I hope that one day I play in the NBA. Even if I don't, playing basketball has still given me a chance to be a better person, let me travel, meet new people, and taught me to work hard."

-Loseni Kamara