impact | hoops of hope comes to minnesota

The IMPACT blog series demonstrate that stories have the power to inspire and create change.

13-Year-Old Humanitarian | NEED Issue 3

© 2008 NEED Communications, Inc.
aisling and siobhàn reynolds play at the hoops of hope event. photo | john wright

Aisling and Siobhàn Reynolds

“I thought, ‘You know what? Here’s a kid doing something … and I have a kid and she can help other kids.’”

When Austin Gutwein started Hoops of Hope, it inspired people across the nation. Aisling Reynolds and her daughter Siobhàn are two people who decided to take action.

After first reading Austin’s article in NEED magazine, Aisling knew she wanted to help. “I thought, ‘You know what? Here’s a kid doing something … and I have a kid and she can help other kids.’ That’s really all it was, it seemed like such a heartwarming and uplifting story, and something that was so relatable. So we chatted about [hosting a basketball shoot-out], and Siobhàn was gung-ho for it right away,” explains Aisling.

After getting Siobhàn’s school involved, hanging posters and spreading the word, the mother and daughter hosted Hoops of Hope at the Marcy Open School gym.

The night was a success. Prizes were given, and upbeat music encouraged everyone to make more free-throws. The Marcy Open School gym was buzzing with excitement. Volunteers counted and retrieved balls at seven baskets, and everyone left with NEED magazine in hand.

“In the end we met our goal, ” Siobhàn declares. She went on to proudly explain how they met their initial goal of 1,000 USD in only two hours. By the end of the night people had shot over 6,000 baskets and raised $2,711 USD. Aisling and Siobhàn were told that the money they raised helped build a medical clinic in Zambia.

Aisling and Siobhàn plan to host another Hoops of Hope event on December 6, 2008, in Minneapolis, MN. To imrove fundraising for the next event, Aisling is focused on getting the school’s PTA involved. “That’s my goal this year, to get more of a widespread involvement,” Aisling says.

When asked why they decided to start their own Hoops of Hope event, Aisling says, “You know, it’s just one of those little things that you try to do, to make things better for everyone.”

>> read the Austin Gutwein, Hoops of Hope feature article

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