As each June hundreds of thousands of basketball fanatics take to streets and parking lots-turned-courts in Spokane, it’s hard to imagine a time when Hoopfest was not. The tournament has grown, changed and only continues to get better, but it certainly looked different during its inaugural weekend 25 years ago than it does today. One thing, however, has remained absolutely consistent: Moss Adams has always been a key player.
Rick Betts, managing partner at Moss Adams Spokane, was the mastermind behind the dream of Hoopfest and quickly brought the company on board. While Betts is still chair of the Hoopfest board, Moss Adams has also continued to be an integral sponsor of our organization.
One of the greatest interests Hoopfest and Moss Adams share is investment in the greater Spokane community. We are proud of our friends at Moss Adams, and wanted to highlight just one way the company is reaching out and changing lives.
In 2013, Moss Adams Spokane branch desired to step outside of the walls of its downtown office suite and make an active and tangible difference in the community. With an office full of highly motivated, well trained and competent individuals, the organization trusted this was achievable.
One in every four kids in Spokane lives below the federal poverty level and logically, food is a resource that disappears quickly. Convicted of the necessity to jump in and make a difference, Moss Adams teamed up with A Bite 2 Go, a Spokane organization that provides weekend food to elementary school students through Second Harvest Food Bank.
Moss Adams became the first Spokane business to adopt an entire school through A Bite 2 Go. The call was sent out to all 80 Spokane employees to individually sponsor a Cooper student. For just $12 a month, a Moss Adams employee can feed a child on the weekends while he or she is away from school and may not have sustenance provided. Currently, over half of the company’s employees are sponsoring a child.
The program requires more than a monetary commitment from a sponsor though. Each week, a volunteer from Moss Adams stops by Second Harvest to pick up the 14 boxes of food and then personally delivers them to the school.
Naturally, the program has expanded as Moss Adams employees become more and more devoted to the cause. At Christmastime, the firm had a drive for hats, gloves and socks, which was followed by a donation of over $500 from members of Moss Adams administrative team concerned that many of these kids may not taste a holiday meal without it. Several company employees were present at Cooper’s “fund run” last spring, an effort to raise money for extracurricular activities and trips for students. Volunteers have also helped at events such as Cooper’s field day and have visited Second Harvest with Cooper staff members to help package the meals.
In an effort to promote higher education and inspire young Cooper students, Moss Adams wanted to fund a scholarship for a high school senior and Cooper alumnus looking to attend college. The participants wrote essays, submitted their resumes, and the eventual winner returned to Cooper to speak to the graduating sixth grade class, with Moss Adams representatives in attendance. The scholarship is $1000 per year.
While meals, donations and volunteering at events can go a long way, the team at Moss Adams is ultimately invested in these kids being cared for and loved. Two employees have taken it on themselves to mentor students at Cooper, by meeting with them weekly. Of course, the impact this has on both parties involved is immeasurable.
“Our hope is not only to make a positive impact on the lives of the children at Cooper, but in those of our employees as well,” Moss Adams marketing and sales manager Anna Bresnahan said. “We want the kids at Cooper to know someone cares for them.”
Thanks to Moss Adams for setting such a positive example in the community. The impact of Hoopfest’s community sponsors extends far beyond one weekend in June; Hoopfest partners with enthusiastic organizations year round who share our heart for giving back and making a difference as much as we do. If you or your organization is interested in teaming up with us, visit spokanehoopfest.net/sponsor or contact marketing director Bailee Neyland at firstname.lastname@example.org .