Basketball & Community Festival Promotes Healthy Lifestyles in Richmond’s East End
The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club will host the 2nd Annual Hoops for Health and Healthy Living Festival on Saturday, April 26 at 3701 R Street in Richmond’s East End.
The event encourages all Richmond residents to live a healthy lifestyle through diet, recreation and education is inspired by an early 2013 report that noted residents in the East End, where The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club is located, face health challenges and a life expectancy nearly 20 years less than residents in the West End. In an effort to raise awareness of the issue and further promote healthy lifestyles among its members, The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club developed the Hoops for Health and Healthy Living Festival as an all-day event open to all community members free of charge to engage and educate them on healthy lifestyles.
Nearly 30 teams comprised of sixth-to-eighth grade boys and girls will participate in a 3-on-3 basketball tournament, and more than 20 community organizations will participate in the Healthy Living Festival to provide “accidental education” (fun, engaging activities & take-aways) on healthy lifestyles. Former NBA player Wali Jones, who played with Wilt Chamberlain on the 1967 NBA Champion Philadelphia 76ers, also will host an intermission program on healthy choices for the second straight year.
“I thought it was a great way to use basketball to convey the message that your health is important and to bring the East End community and beyond together,” Armstrong High School basketball coach Darryl Watts said after the 2013 event.
The Hoops for Health and Healthy Living Festival is presented by Bon Secours Health System, whose support ensures The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club will be able to continue to educate Club and community members on the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle.
Jones played in the NBA for 12 season and has since turned motivational speaker and community outreach ambassador for the Miami Heat
“I love the concept that is presented at Hoops for Health,” Jones said. “It is so important for our young people and their parents to realize what is at stake when it comes to investing in their own health. I am excited about coming again to share and build on what we’ve started, which is to communicate that this is not just an event but a lifestyle that we are talking about.”