Our Mission

Life and Basketball (LAB) is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization serving middle school age children in Philadelphia. LAB’s mission is to increase opportunities for underserved youth to succeed. Using basketball as a transformative tool, LAB provides programs focused on improving social and emotional skills, attitudes, academic performance, health/fitness, while at the same time exposing children to music/dance and demonstrating the importance of community engagement.   

Our Vision

 LAB’s vision is for all children to have equal opportunities and to develop the social and emotional competence necessary to face the challenges of life. We hope to be able to reach more and more children using our unique methodology and curriculum and become the first choice partner to all schools in our region. By partnering with schools we hope to work with teachers, drawing attention to the importance of social emotional learning, and advocating for adequate resources to address this core competency.

  Our History  

LAB is a recently established organization however it has many years of experience leading it. It grew out of the Chair and Vice Chair’s love of basketball and the simple idea that all children should have the same opportunities to succeed.

Co-founders Jason Naum and Devin Adams understood the transformative power of basketball and set out to use it as a vehicle to increase academic performance and social and emotional competence. Devin Adams (Vice Chair), an experienced basketball coach, trainer, music teacher and educator, was well aware of the benefits of organized sports, and basketball in particular. As a high school basketball coach he regularly saw not only the physical benefits that came with participation but also the social and emotional ones. His student athletes had a reduced risk of weight-related health issues, reduced anxiety and enhanced self-esteem, lower delinquency and dropout rates, and a greater foundation for the development of friendships, among other benefits. It was clear to him that with the right coach organized basketball had the tremendous potential to increase his student’s social and emotional competence and give them a solid foundation for success in life.

What also became clear to coach Adams, and is backed by research, is that middle school ages children are the most vulnerable and that support should start with them and carry through to high school. Unfortunately, the reality for most inner city public middle schools is that they have too few resources to offer organized basketball opportunities which meant students would have to look for the benefits of playing organized basketball someplace else.  The idea for LAB was born.