Yash Zandiyeh helps coach the Killarney Cougars against the Princess Margaret Mustangs from Penticton at Delview Secondary’s inaugural Gurpreet Gill Invitational on Dec. 1, 2017. (James Smith photo)

Lower Mainland basketball community rallies for shoe drive

BC Hoop Scoop founder Yash Zandiyeh is bringing rival schools together for a good cause

Basketball has been an important part of Yash Zandiyeh’s life for as long as he can remember.

When Zandiyeh was five years old and living in Tsawwassen, he enrolled in former Harlem Globetrotter Mel Davis’ basketball program.

“My sister, who is three years older than me, she was in the program. And I’m literally sitting there and he’s like, ‘Hey, do want to come play with us?’” he said. “From there I basically just stuck with Mel until I was like 12 or 13 years old.”

Zandiyeh played basketball for Vancouver’s Magee Secondary, graduating in 2002. At 18, he went on to coach Night Hoops (a program for at-risk youth aged 13-18 in Vancouver and Burnaby) for five years, then refereed there for another six after that. For the past seven years he’s been coaching basketball at Vancouver’s Killarney Secondary.

Five years ago, Zandiyeh started BC Hoop Scoop on Twitter as means of promoting and supporting the province’s basketball community. Since then it’s expanded to other social media channels and a website.

“There was like a three or four year period where literally 10 out of 12 months it was just basketball,” Zandiyeh said. “Like, I’d coach, go watch a game, on weekends I’d be at tournaments, I’d coach club in the spring, in the summer I’d go watch club teams play.

“So that’s basketball for me.”

Now he’s looking to take it a step further and help the hoops community give back by organizing the first annual BC Hoops Shoe Drive, on now through Jan. 13.

At a number of Lower Mainland high schools and tournaments, players, coaches and fans can drop off their old, clean shoes to be donated to Shoe Bank Canada, a Kelowna-based charity that provides footwear to the working poor and homeless both at home and abroad.

“It’s not just basketball shoes, [it can be] casual shoes, it can be whatever,” he said.

After the last shoes are collected, Zandiyeh will be bringing all that donated footwear to the Shoe Warehouse in Ladner, who will handle getting the haul up to the Shoe Bank’s headquarters in Kelowna.

Zandiyeh got the idea for the shoe drive after a friend of his collected more than 250 pairs of shoes for Covenant House in Vancouver last spring.

“Once he did that I was like, ‘You know what? That’s kind of a cool idea,’” he said. “I realized that I think it had been a very, very long time since, at least within the basketball community, we had some type of shoe drive or any type of initiative like that that really gives back.”

Using the contacts he had developed both as a coach and through BC Hoop Scoop, Zandiyeh reached out to several area high schools to ask if they’d be willing to putting aside those rivalries and come together for a good cause.

“Being politically correct, there is some animosity in the basketball community,” he said. “Let’s just forget about all that stuff and let’s just do something that’s positive and good and grow.”

Zandiyeh said the community has grown by leaps and bounds in the last decade or two, but with that has come increased pressure on both the players and their parents.

“If you look at basketball 15, 20 years ago, there were maybe two or three programs. Now, it’s just a money pit. Parents are paying all this money for their kids to go train, play club, all of that stuff,” he said.

“So … how do we shift away from all that stuff? [Well], not shift away from it, but just do something that’s honestly, as clichéed as it sounds, out of the goodness of our hearts, and gives back to people.”

Anyone looking to donate to the BC Hoops Shoe Drive can find donation bins at the following locations/events:

• Dec. 7-9: G.W. Graham Middle-Secondary (Chilliwack)

• Dec. 7-9: Tsumura Basketball Invitational (boys) at the Langley Events Centre

• Dec. 8-9: Sands Secondary (North Delta)

• Dec. 14-16: Tsumura Basketball Invitational (girls) at the Langley Events Centre

• Dec. 15-16: G.W. Graham Middle-Secondary (Chilliwack)

• Dec. 19-21: McDonalds VPD Winter Invitational, at Gladstone Secondary and Windermere Secondary (Vancouver)

• Jan. 10-12: Churchill Secondary (Vancouver)

• Jan. 10-13: St. Thomas More Collegiate (Burnaby)

• Jan. 10-13: Sands Secondary (North Delta)

David Thompson Secondary in Vancouver will also be hosting a donation bin for the duration of the shoe drive.



editor@northdeltareporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Yash Zandiyeh helps coach the Killarney Cougars against the Princess Margaret Mustangs from Penticton at Delview Secondary’s inaugural Gurpreet Gill Invitational on Dec. 1, 2017. (James Smith photo)

Just Posted

New group for parents of overdose victims launched by Langley mother

There is a lack of long-term resources for grieving parents

BC BUDGET: Fare freeze and free travel for seniors on BC Ferries

A complete fare freeze will be put into place on major routes, and fares will be rolled back on smaller routes by 15 per cent

Canadian aviation legend piloting Pitt Meadows Airport – for a little while at least

‘I love the thrill of flying,’ says 82-year-old George Miller

BC BUDGET: New spaces a step to universal child care

Fees reduced for licensed daycare operators

BC BUDGET: NDP cracks down on speculators, hidden ownership

Foreign buyers’ tax extended to Fraser Valley, Okanagan, Vancouver Island

VIDEO: Top 10 B.C. budget highlights

The NDP is focusing on childcare, affordable housing and speeding up the elimination of MSP premiums

BC BUDGET: NDP hope to nix court delays with $15 million cash influx

Union says funding could stop sheriffs from leaving for higher paid jobs

BC Cattlemen’s Association calls for remediation of firebreaks to prevent erosion, spread of invasive species

Other concerns are fencing restoration and repair, and a lack of feed for cattle.

Patrick Brown’s Tory leadership bid fate looms

Brown’s bid to for Tory leadership to be decided on Wednesday

Alberta shrugs off B.C. legal challenge on wine ban

The potential fine Alberta faces for violating free trade rules according to economic development minister

Yelling vulgar slur at reporter not a crime says judge

Judge rules ‘vulgar’ slur against reporter was not a public disturbance

B.C. runner takes silver at Pan American cross-country championships

Tyler Dozzi’s medal pushes U20 Team Canada to gold finish

Coquitlam piano teacher accused of sex assault involving former students

Police say Dmytro Kubyshkin has been teaching in private homes for more than 20 years

Most Read