When you buy a home, there’s a whole lot that comes with it. Yes, there are (presumably) ceilings and walls and flooring and fixtures, but the truth is your home extends well beyond your front door. Your home is your street and your neighborhood; it’s your community and the people in it. And no matter where you call “home,” every ‘hood has its thing—its activity that brings everyone together in a rally of spirit. Whether it’s basketball, football, soccer, or show choir, every High School-centric community has one thing it gets particularly jazzed about.
And we would argue that’s a beautiful thing…
Athletics help kids build character, uncover their strengths, and overcome weakness--and, when combined with the oft-required qualifying academics--they help mold young scholars with big goals and bright futures. Kids become leaders, team players, advocates, and role models...all while playing around with their friends. The fees and equipment costs associated with team sports can be steep, but here's the cool part: this is where community has the opportunity to come through in a major way. In fact, Mel's Locker--which enables parents/families/friends to purchase photos (or make donations) contributing to a fund that provides sports equipment or pays program fees for those that might need the help--was founded for just this reason (and you can learn more or make a contribution by emailing [email protected]).
In the case of Cyprus High—where we recently attended the game of one of our COLLECTIVE crew’s eldest boys—the current head coaches are alumni themselves, and athletes of days past continue to come back the bleachers and cheer for their alma mater. The younger kids wear their rec league jerseys to the games and know all the players by heart, and the stands are filled with both students and the parents who’ve chosen to buy and stay within a community that contributed so much to their own childhoods.
Chances are that just a short drive down the road from your own home—and a quick walk through locker-filled hallways—is a gym waiting to be filled with your cheers; cheers of support for a team and for a community that fosters lifelong relationships. Whatever school colors you proudly showcase on the big night, we invite you to take a moment to appreciate and get in the spirit with your neighbors. Congratulate a student on whatever it is they’ve chosen to pursue, whether it be track and field or the academic decathlon. Shake a coach’s hand for devoting time and passion to the betterment of their community. And be sure to yell extra loud from the stands.