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

Silverdale students study gym-sized map of the Indigenous Peoples of Canada

The map is one of only five in existence across Canada and is the only one in B.C.

Friends describe murder victim as ‘most caring guy we knew’

Jagvir Malhi of Abbotsford was not involved in gangs or criminal activity, they say

Ten-year sentence for man convicted of belt-strangling death in Abbotsford

Shayne McGenn guilty of manslaughter in 2016 death of David Delaney, 63

Former Mission educator receives national Indigenous role model award

Kimberly Sommer, now in Abbotsford, went to Edmonton last week to receive the Indspire role model award

Gas price drop expected to hit Fraser Valley today

Analyst says to take advantage, warns slight increase may follow

VIDEO: People with diabetes meet their alert dogs

A diabetic alert dog is trained to detect low blood sugar in people who have Type 1 diabetes

ZYTARUK: You don’t have to wear the ribbon – but look out if you don’t

Demonize and dog-pile. If you disagree with me, you are not only wrong, you are evil. The enemy…

B.C. Realtor suspended after helping intern forge note about sick grandma

Vancouver real estate agent Jaideep Singh Puri has to pay fine, take ethics course

Offensive Facebook post by Okanagan Conservative riding sparks outrage

Post taken down after Conservative MP in neighbouring riding condemns it and demands removal

Judge rules against ALC on rural B.C. subdivision

The ALC can’t change the definition of an acre, the judge ruled.

John Horgan shrugs off low turnout, change to referendum option

‘No’ proportional representation group says voting should be extended

Two more government pot shops to open in Kamloops

Two private applications are also in the queue to come before city council by the end of the year

2 B.C. men charged after allegedly stealing $1,400 worth of butter

The two men, ages 23 and 25, are facing charges of theft under $5,000, Coquitlam police said

Invasive fire ants join the tourist swarms at Hawaii Volcano National Park

Invasive species found at popular tourist destination

Most Read