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Warriors assist at Next Step Shelter

If preseason community service is an indication, this version of the University of Hawai’i basketball team is big on assists and teamwork.

The Warriors continued their “giving back” campaign with a visit to the Next Step Homeless Shelter in Kaka’ako on Tuesday evening.

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“This is what it’s all about at the end of the day,” head coach Eran Ganot said. “Fighting and working hard to be in a position where you can have influence, and influence lives in a positive way. We can do that and we’re very thrilled to have the opportunity to do that today.”

The Warriors conducted a mini-clinic for the youth members of the shelter, and also helped construct a new basketball stand with backboard and rim. The 20 or so basketballs used for the mini-clinic were also donated to the children.

Later, the Warrior players and coaches helped serve food to the families at the shelter. More than 260 people stay in the shelter each night, including more than 60 children under the age of 12.

“It’s very humbling right now,” junior Aaron Valdes said. “Giving back to them and helping them out with the clinic here, it’s a lot of fun, to watch them smile out here and play.”

Junior Mike Thomas added: “We’re given so much as players here, and treated so well, it’s great to give back to the people who give to us. Give back to the community any way we can, we love it.”

Ganot said the community service projects will continue throughout the season and beyond.

The Next Step Homeless Shelter, which is run by Waikiki Health Center, is open seven nights a week. The shelter accepts donations throughout the year, either in monetary forms or donated items.

CLICK HERE to view the list of donated items needed

CLICK HERE to download the monetary donation form

CLICK HERE for more general information on the Next Step Shelter

9 Comments

  1. Life is tough even for little ones. But these are the moments that they will cherish for the rest of their lives.

  2. It’s great to see the basketball program so active in the community. Do other sports teams do similar things to give back? I see a big PR opportunity to get all the sports teams involved in many aspects of the community.

  3. I think the Wahine basketball team was helping out at a shelter and a Boys & Girls Club in Waianae. The football team volunteered at a Boys & Girls club in July.

  4. What a great experience for both sides. It looks like the team players were good at entertaining the kids and I’m sure the kids were super happy to get a chance like this to see the UH team up close.

    Way to go Warriors!!!

  5. Ask not what Hawaii can give to you but, ask what you can give to Hawaii !!!

  6. Great way to give back to the community. Very humbling.

    n2o4joy, Unfanzonly1, Eagle, RunBows,
    I thought you announced your retirement from Warrior Insider yesterday.

  7. Props to the team and staff for community service !

  8. What a blessing to BE a blessing

  9. Great way of giving back and important life skill Keep it up boys

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