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Sports gear donation program aims to make sure everyone can play

Credit: Kidsday staff artist / Olivia Osbourne, Wheatley Heights

Double Dribble is a program we started through our school’s Young Leaders Club to help less-privileged kids play sports.

We donate new and gently used sports equipment to the kids who want to play sports but who may not be able to afford the equipment. We began this idea a few years ago when we were in fifth grade. We started by collecting equipment from our school, from our church, Mary Immaculate in Bellport, where we play Catholic Youth Organization basketball, and from our teammates at soccer, lacrosse, basketball and volleyball practices and clinics. We donated all of it to the Boys and Girls Club in the Bellport area.

The next year, when we were in sixth grade, we did it again, collecting from church and school. We also raised money for the club by holding a basketball clinic at their gym, coached by Coach Peter Grossi of Bellport High School varsity basketball. We raised more than $350, collected lots of equipment, and gave 10 of the club’s members a free clinic.

This year, we are donating to the Lighthouse Mission of Bellport. We collected equipment from our school in February and from our church. Later this spring we are planning to raise more money with another basketball clinic.

Double Dribble started as an effort to help kids in need play sports. Both of us play many sports and cannot imagine not being able to play because of a lack of equipment. We hope that the equipment and clinics we create will inspire other kids to play sports.

Marytheresa Donohue’s seventh-grade class, St. Mary School, East Islip

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