A few years ago my daughter Bella was playing baseball in a non-competitive special needs league that accommodated players of all disabilities. Both mental and physical. But she craved the competition, she wanted to win a game! The goal is always to have fun and play fair but competition gives you a goal, something to push for. To get better for.
3 years ago she signed up to start playing with the newly formed Jr. Thunder Wheelchair basketball team and found her family. The team worked hard. There was (and still is) only a small amount of kids so they played hard all day with no subs. We got them ready for their first tournament in 3 months!
To see looks on their faces when they rolled into that tournament in Charlotte, NC was beautiful. A room full of kids just like them. And a lot of them. In that room the people NOT in wheelchairs were the ones getting stared at!
That first season we didn't come close to winning a game but they fought hard and got ready for the next season.
That next season, we got some points on the board! The team grew. Bella met her best friend in the world. A young girl from Texas. They are inseparable now.
Last season we won some games! The kids were getting pumped up and knew the hard work was paying off.
Well guess what happened this year? After some serious hard work, lots of tumbles out of chairs and fighting teams that have been around a lot longer than we have WE MADE IT TO NATIONALS in Kentucky NEXT MONTH!
We are still a young parent and volunteer driven team that gets almost all of it's funding from grassroots efforts. So many teams have a full ride because they are hooked into an NBA franchise or have huge corporate backing. We don't. We are working hard on making that happen but for now we have to work hard to get our kids to each and every event.
HOW THE MONEY WILL BE USED:
Entry Fees $250.00
Bus/Van Rental $300
Event Tickets $?
Event Banquet Tickets $?
Jersey for new player $50
Equipment Costs $?
We have some funds in the bank but not much. Not nearly enough to cover the above. Once we cover the above costs anything left over will be used solely for the team to travel and get to tournaments next season!
This is huge. When you have wheelchair basketball teams you have a lot of player flux. Team members come and go all the time due to sickness, surgery, progression of condition, moving to be closer to better hospitals. We have had a core team for a few seasons now and they have worked so hard together. Next season a lot of them move up to the Varsity and it may take time to gel and get back to National level fighting shape. This is a HUGE opportunity for these kids!
Thank you for your help and ANY amount will make a huge difference!!