YMCA hosting charity basketball tournament

  • Matt Allen, who was adopted from a Haitian orphanage called Hope for the Children of Haiti about 10 years ago, plays pick-up basketball. Allen is now organizing a “Hoopin’ for Hope” fundraiser to benefit the orphanage. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

  • Matt Allen, who was adopted from a Haitian orphanage called Hope for the Children of Haiti about 10 years ago, plays pick-up basketball. Allen is now organizing a “Hoopin’ for Hope” fundraiser to benefit the orphanage.

  • Matt Allen, who was adopted from a Haitian orphanage called Hope for the Children of Haiti about 10 years ago, plays pick-up basketball. Allen, above, at left, is now organizing a “Hoopin’ for Hope” fundraiser to benefit the orphanage.

Staff Writer
Published: 6/19/2019 6:33:44 PM

GREENFIELD — Matt Allen was adopted from a Haitian orphanage about 10 years ago, shortly before an earthquake killed roughly 100,000 people in the Caribbean nation.

Ten years later, Allen feels he has thrived — going to college, getting married and earning a master’s degree. After dabbling in the American dream, the 27-year-old has decided it’s time to give back to the orphanage where he got his start.

That’s why he has partnered with the YMCA in Greenfield to organize the “Hoopin’ for Hope” fundraiser, a 3-on-3 basketball tournament to benefit Hope for the Children of Haiti (HFC), a Massachusetts nonprofit organization that supports the orphanage of the same name that provides roughly 100 children with shelter, healthy meals and medical support.

Allen said registration has not been as plentiful as he would have liked, though he hopes more people will show up. The cost is $25 per person and all proceeds go to HFC. The tournament is scheduled for 2 to 4:30 p.m. at the YMCA on Saturday.

Allen said he got the idea for the fundraiser while managing the YMCA’s youth basketball league in the winter. He enjoys playing basketball in his spare time, though he grew up playing soccer and played the sport in high school.

“I really enjoy the running around,” he said about basketball. “I’m better at soccer, but basketball is a little more challenging to me.”

Dave Garappolo, the YMCA’s youth and family director, said the Y is happy to offer its facility for community events. He said the fundraiser is a great idea and he hopes many people will attend, noting the staff has advertised the event to YMCA members.

Anyone interested in signing up or making a donation to support the fundraiser can visit the Facebook page, facebook.com/HFHBasketballFundraiser, or email Allen at 09mattallen@gmail.com.

Reach Domenic Poli at: dpoli@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 262.


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