#By BRENT STUBBS
#Senior Sports Reporter
#BLYTHE Rolle and Kyle Rolle, of no direct relation, emerged as the upper and lower champions of the Hoops for Homes initiative that was hosted by Xavier’s Lower School Student of the Year Adrian Dean.
#The pair were crowned after a series of shooting competitions yesterday at the school’s basketball court where Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Mario Bowleg joined Dean in shooting a few basketballs for the faculty, staff, students and parents in attendance.
#Bowleg commended Dean for having the vision to assist those in need through their home affairs.
#“I’m just proud to see that a young man is willing to go out there and assist the needy,” he said. “And the fact that he has the entire staff and Xavier’s School behind him, we decided to come on board and help him in this endeavour.
#“We understand that sporting disciplines is used to help people to develop lifelong characters, but we can also use it as a vehicle to help those that are in need in our community.”
#In presenting a cheque to Dean to assist in his venture, Bowleg said he’s encouraging his political collegiates and others in the community to assist in events such as this or to form their own initiatives.
#“I am very proud of him, and I will continue to monitor this programme and I will assist him as much as I can possibly do so,” Bowleg stated.
#Dean, a 10-year-old sixth grader, said although he only swims, he wanted to do something different. “I love basketball. Even though I may not play it, I enjoy it,” he said.
#“I just want to help those people who can’t help themselves.
#“I just think that we need to help those who we can. I am trying to help an 80-year-old in our community, so if there are persons who want to help, they can contact our school and get on board.”
#His mother, Antonya Toote, said when her son decided to start this initiative, she supported him wholeheartedly. “I think it’s very good that he wants to give back to the community. It’s always important when a youth can get involved in lending a helping hand to those who are unable to help themselves, especially the elderly in our community,” she stressed. So, I’m very proud of him.”
#Toote said while they are trying to raise funds to secure the building materials for the home, they will stretch the donations received as far as they can in getting more homes completed, if possible.
#Jacintha Goffe, the school’s principal, said they are proud of Dean and his parents, who are assisting him because while they are very proud of his initiative, he has always been an exemplary student at Xavier’s Lower School.
#“When Adrian put his portfolio forth to us, along with other students of grade six, we just thought that his portfolio was an excellent one,” she stated.
#“Yes, he made the grades, which is very important, but when we looked at what he did in community service, working with his father to earn funds to help others in need, we just thought it was an awesome initiative for such a young child.
#“So, we agreed with his mom that we will partner with him and make this event even greater so that we can help more persons in the community. So, this is just the beginning of what we are hoping that persons who view this and see his TikTok video would also help those who are less fortunate in their communities and let’s make this Bahamas an even greater one as we are on our way to our 50th anniversary.”
#Also on hand to give her support was Claudette Rolle, the director of education in the Catholic Board of Education.
#“It really means a lot and it makes me very proud when we can encourage our children to give back,” Rolle said. “We are supposed to take care of those who are less fortunate, so to see him come up with this initiative that is so fundamental, which is a home.
#“All of us need a roof over our heads to be protected, so I am very proud of him for doing this. We have to start developing this spirit of giving back while they are young, so I am very proud of him.”
#Kyle Rolle, an eight-year-old second grader, said he was waiting for this day to come.
#“I was practicing home and I prepared myself for this day and I just won,” Rolle said. “I just feel good.”
#Fourth grader Blythe Rolle said he was happy to be a winner as well.
#“I feel very good about winning the award. I am happy with my performance,” said the nine-year-old.
#“I think what Adrian is doing is good. I am happy I won it to support him,” he added.
#Persons wishing to donate to the cause are urged to visit the office of Xavier’s Lower School or call 322-3077 and state their desire to support Adrian in “Hoops for Homes.”