Creation of the Hartford Hoopers Basketball League For Physically and Mentally Challenged Children and Young Adults
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Starting a basketball league for mentally and/or physically challenged children and young adults has been a goal of mine for many years. I have looked up such leagues from around the country and the majority of these leagues take place in California. The only option for many of the parents is to allow their child to play with the Special Olympics, which causes them to travel a fare amount to play. This league would allow the children to play close to home, play people they know, and allow them to grow. This growth will be both physical, they will be in better shape with a deeper knowledge of basketball, and social because they will be able to interact with different people and a consistent group of people. Growing up with a sister with medical problems ranging from epilepsy to autistic tendencies, it has given me a view of just how hard it can be for the children and for the families. Along with all this I have played or been involved with sports my entire life and have seen what can come from these. Through sports a sense of independence can be found within a person, especially those who have never been given the chance to succeed and play within a competitive field of play, sometimes leading to the players finding unknown abilities. With these children and young adults having little to no independence within their everyday lives, playing a competitive game with their own abilities to rely on gives them a sense of self-reliance that they may have never felt before in their lives. This has been evident to me since I have seen my sister go through this in many different ways in her lifetime.