April 19, 2024

Hoops for Hope Recap

As we take a moment to reflect on the remarkable success of “Hoops for Hope,” it becomes evident that this event was far more than just a day of basketball and celebration. It was a powerful demonstration of community strength, showing what can be achieved when we unite for a shared purpose. Our sincere gratitude goes out to each person who contributed to making this event a success. Your involvement has brought us closer to our goal, but our journey isn’t finished yet.

Welcome to a recap of a special day that combined the thrill of basketball with the joy of giving back. The “Hoops for Hope” event, held at St Anne’s gym, was more than just a series of games; it was a gathering with a heartfelt mission. Our goal? To raise funds for a vital cause – constructing a dormitory for children at a rural school in Zambia. 

How did we fare in reaching our target, you wonder? Well, stay tuned as we dribble through the day’s events, and I promise, that the reveal of our fundraising success will be worth the wait!

Event Overview

As participants and supporters arrived on March 10th, there was a genuine sense of anticipation and community spirit. The buzz around St Anne’s gym was palpable as friends, families, and basketball enthusiasts mingled, sharing their excitement for the day ahead. Players registered, warmed up, and prepared for a day of friendly competition, each bringing their unique energy and love for the game.

The event showcased a basketball tournament from noon to 6 pm, characterized by an air of camaraderie and friendly rivalry. As the afternoon progressed, the anticipation built, with each game drawing in more spectators, and the chatter and laughter indicating the day’s success. The evening brought a different vibe, transitioning smoothly from competitive sports to relaxation and entertainment, with food, drinks, and music, as well as additional activities for everyone to enjoy, ensuring a memorable experience for all attendees.

Click here to check out all the awesome photos from the event!

The Basketball Tournament

The tournament featured a series of games played to 21 points, emphasizing quick play and strategic thinking with a 15-minute time limit per game. The format kept the games dynamic and engaging, ensuring that players and spectators alike were absorbed in the action. Sportsmanship was a key focus, with players calling their own fouls, fostering an atmosphere of respect and fairness.

This self-regulation added a layer of integrity to the games, with players demonstrating commendable honesty and sportsmanship. The tournament was inclusive, with a diverse group of players across various ages and skill levels participating, making for an enjoyable and competitive experience for all. From young basketball enthusiasts to seasoned players, the tournament was a showcase of diverse talents and styles, contributing to an event that was as much about community and sportsmanship as it was about competition.

Additional Attractions and Activities

After the tournament, the gym took on a festive atmosphere for the evening celebration, transforming into a lively hub of fun and camaraderie. The mood was light and joyful, with participants and guests mingling, sharing stories from the day, and engaging in the various activities available. Attendees enjoyed a range of activities, including a 3-point contest and pop-a-shot games, which were a hit with guests of all ages.

These activities added an extra layer of fun and engagement, allowing even non-players to participate in the excitement. The championship games of the tournament were a highlight, drawing a crowd and generating an electrifying atmosphere as teams vied for the top spot. Alongside the competitive spirit, the array of prizes, such as an Xbox and Tommy Bahama merchandise, added an element of anticipation and excitement, with winners and participants alike celebrating their achievements and luck.

Fundraising Success and Participant Feedback

The event was a resounding success in terms of fundraising, raising a total of $43,000 in cash, along with $7,225 in in-kind donations. Feedback from participants and volunteers was overwhelmingly positive, reflecting a sense of pride and satisfaction in being part of such a meaningful and well-organized event.

The success of the fundraiser was matched by the overwhelming positivity in the feedback from those who participated and volunteered. One player captured the essence of the day, saying, “Happy to help! And honestly, our contributions pale in comparison to the Herculean efforts you all made to throw an amazing fundraising extravaganza!” 

This sentiment of gratitude and admiration was echoed by many others. Another participant shared, “Such a great event and afternoon (evening/night time). You all are solid humans. Grateful to be a part of it.” The words not only conveyed appreciation but also a sense of community and collective achievement.

The volunteers, essential to the smooth running of the event, also expressed their fulfillment and pride. One remarked, “Remarkable event. Thanks to all the volunteers for their time and energy. So proud to support this cause.” Their hard work and dedication were vital in creating an event that not only ran seamlessly but also resonated deeply with everyone involved. 

Another volunteer reflected, “It was awesome, thanks for all the time and energy that went into it, and for an awesome mission. Amazing what you’ve done for the project.” The feedback was a testament to the power of community coming together to support a great cause, with each person playing a part in the event’s success.

Overall, the “Hoops for Hope” event stood as a shining example of what can be achieved when fun, sportsmanship, and a commitment to a noble cause come together. The funds raised, the smiles seen, and the hearts touched all spoke volumes about the impact of this special day. It wasn’t just a basketball tournament; it was a celebration of community spirit and a reminder of the good we can do when we unite for a common purpose.

The Impact on the Cause

The funds raised at the “Hoops for Hope” event will make a significant impact in the lives of students in Zambia, offering them a safe and convenient place to stay through the construction of a new dormitory. Not only did the event successfully contribute to this tangible goal, but it also played a pivotal role in raising awareness for Dwankhozi Hope, garnering further support and community engagement.

Before we proceed, it’s important to give a hearty shout-out to the amazing individuals and teams who played key roles in organizing this successful event. A huge thank you to Lee Scovern, who skillfully managed the tournament brackets and took on the role of tournament director, ensuring everything ran smoothly. Kudos to Chuck McFarland StateFarm for providing the essential jerseys and keeping our players hydrated with a well-stocked water and Gatorade station.

David Totten deserves a special mention for not only organizing and partially funding the jerseys but also for his dynamic presence as the event’s MC, court monitor, and scorekeeper. His energy and dedication were infectious! Jesse Pannoni, our fantastic DJ, set the perfect tone for the event with his great music choices, adding to the fun and festive atmosphere.

Marisa Gronholz, our party coordinator and host, played a crucial role in making the evening celebration a memorable one. Her efforts ensured everyone enjoyed a wonderful time after the tournament. A big thanks to the Alvarez family as well, who were instrumental as court monitors and scorekeepers, helping the games to proceed seamlessly.

The Russo family’s involvement was truly a display of teamwork and community spirit. It was all hands on deck, with the kids contributing to art, photos, and setup, and Becky handling registration and AV with aplomb. This event was a reflection of their dedication and hard work.

Lastly, a special mention to Brad MacLean and his agency Nspired Digital for rolling out the impressive RSVP/registration system. Their tech and digital support were invaluable in ensuring a smooth registration process and enhancing the overall experience of the event.

The collective efforts of all these individuals and teams were integral to the success of “Hoops for Hope.” Each contribution, whether big or small, helped to create an event that was not only enjoyable but also deeply meaningful. We also took some great pictures from the event that you can check out here.


As we take a moment to reflect on the remarkable success of “Hoops for Hope,” it becomes evident that this event was far more than just a day of basketball and celebration. It was a powerful demonstration of community strength, showing what can be achieved when we unite for a shared purpose. Our sincere gratitude goes out to each person who contributed to making this event a success. Your involvement has brought us closer to our goal, but our journey isn’t finished yet.

While “Hoops for Hope” exceeded our fundraising expectations, there is still a distance to cover to reach our overall financial target. The construction of the dormitory in Zambia is an ongoing project, and every contribution brings us one step closer to providing a safe and nurturing environment for the students. If you were inspired by what we achieved together at the event and would like to further support this cause, we warmly invite you to donate. Every contribution, no matter the size, makes a significant difference.

To donate, please visit our donation page here. Your continued support is not just a monetary contribution; it’s an investment in the future of these students and a testament to the power of collective effort.

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