Ross School - Senior Projects 2011
Mentor: Garrett Cutler
Title: Kicks 4 Kids
Kicks 4 Kids is the name of a fundraiser that I helped to organize as my Senior Project while attending high school at The Ross School. During my sophomore year, I went on a school trip to Tanzania, Africa that allowed me to learn about the children of Tanzania and to get involved in their efforts to rebuild their local schools. Working with the children had a great impact on my life and helped me to realize that my Senior Project could not be anything other than helping children. For my senior project, I organized a three-on-three basketball tournament as a fundraiser to benefit children in Africa who cannot afford to buy proper fitting athletic shoes. In choosing to work with an organization called “Hoops 4 Hope”, we were able to send money and sneakers to several villages in Zimbabwe. The reason I chose to work with “Hoops 4 Hope” is because not only do I have a love for basketball, but also for helping others in need. I have been playing basketball since I was three years old and it has become a passion of mine. This project was extremely challenging for me, and it helped me to realize the obstacles that others who are less fortunate than me face in their daily lives. In Africa, there are major problems to overcome such as excessive crime and the constant danger of contracting an infectious disease, such as HIV/AIDS. The main objective of the non-profit organization “Hoops 4 Hope” is to educate the children of Africa and help guide them to live their lives with responsibility.
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Kicks 4 Kids is the name of a fundraiser that I helped to organize as my Senior Project while attending high school at The Ross School. During my sophomore year, I went on a school trip to Tanzania, Africa that allowed me to learn about the children of Tanzania and to get involved in their efforts to rebuild their local schools. Working with the children had a great impact on my life and helped me to realize that my Senior Project could not be anything other than helping children. This made my decision for my Senior Project a lot easier. At first I was torn between whether to do “Care 4 Troops”, which would have been in honor of my father who died while serving our country. This fundraiser would have been parallel to “Jordan’s Initiative”, which raises money to put together care packages for our troops over in Iraq. Because of my trip to Africa and my past experience working with kids, made me realize that “Kicks 4 Kids” would be more fulfilling.
I began process of planning my Senior Project with my choice of summer reading: “Fundraising For Dummies”. This book outlined everything I would need to do to really bring my event up to its maximum. It also gave me a lot more ideas to spice up my event, like setting up a 50/50 raffle and include small giveaways, such as t-shirts. Once the new school term began, it was time for my mentor and me to sit down and formulate a plan. Using my process folio as a starting point, my mentor and I sat down and outlined exactly what I was trying to do, and how many people I would attempt to involve in my event. We came up with concrete numbers and we were able to deliver an outline, which was then used at a systems meeting. A systems meeting can be a dreadful process to go through. It is expected that you will already know how much lighting you will require, how many people will attend, the quantity of food to have on hand, to how many security guards must be on hand. You must know all this information or you will be kindly asked to leave and only return when your information is totally panned out.
My mentor and I were able to pinpoint all the information we had gathered. From outlining the length of cables that would be needed for the DJ, to the number tables and chairs we would need. The systems meeting projected November 6th as my date. That would soon change, because I was unable to have the space needed on that date, so I attended another meeting and received November 13th as my new targeted date. Along with a systems meeting, we needed to begin the process of creating posters. The poster may have been the easiest part, except for the fact that after I had printed over 150 copies, and I had to change the date. Once I had all the new posters placed, the next process was advertising throughout the local towns. First, I went to several businesses where I generally shop, and also I went to my elementary and intermediate schools and asked my former teachers for a donation. Many of them bought several tickets for the 50/50 raffle and some just made a donation. My event turned out to be a success and there were no problems, except for a mishap with the printer. The only part of November 13th that I wish I had done differently would have been not to leave the sign printing for the last minute, which really made everything hectic, but all in all, the event went very smoothly. My second-grade teacher won the 50/50 raffle and decided to donate the money back to my event, which was quite nice. We also held a few smaller raffles for gift cards, which also produced good profits for the event. By being involved in this project, I’ve learned that we can make a difference, wherever we are. I have also gained a greater understanding of humanity and just seeing all the happy faces at my event made me think ‘if the kids here are happy just to be playing in an organized tournament, how happy must the children in Africa be to have sneakers?’ My goal was to bring some insight to my community of the world outside and I really feel that I fulfilled my ambition.
ABO. 1 Jan 1998. Web. 14 Dec 2010.
Crandall, Mark. Hoops For Hope. 1 Dec 2010. Web 8 Dec 2010. <http://www.hoopsafrica.org/about-h4h/h4h-tree-of-life/>.
—. Hoops 4 Hope. 4 Sept 1995. 9 Dec 2010 <www.hoops4hope.org>.
Crandall, Mark. E-mail Interview. 6 Nov. 2010.
Hoops 4 Hope. The Tree of Life. 2003. Photograph. Hoops 4 Hope.org, Cape Town.
McNulty, Kelly. Social Capital Through Sport. Social Capital. Western Cape: Toni Sylvester, 2010.
NEWS, ESPN. Hunter Coaches barefoot, and sneakers come flooding in. 25 Jan 2008. 15 Dec 2010 <http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/news/story?id=3214029>.
Release, Official. "Dakar to host Basketball without Borders Africa 2010." NBA.com 10 Mar 2010. Web 15 Dec 2010. <http://www.nba.com/2010/news/03/10/bwb/>.
Mark Crandall whom started Hoops 4 Hope in 1995 to provide sports, fun, education and opportunity for all young people.