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JIS News

The resources of three high school female basketball teams in the corporate area have been boosted with the donation of athletic shoes.
A total of 33 converse sneakers valued at about $231,000 were yesterday (December 29) donated to young ladies from the Queen’s School, Camperdown High and St. Hugh’s High by founder of Simone4Children and national women’s basketball captain, Simone Edwards.
Ms. Edwards formerly played in the American Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) for the Seattle Storm before retiring from club basketball in 2006.
During her time at Seattle, Ms. Edwards was known as the ‘Jamaican Hurricane’, and she finished as the team’s all-time leader in rebounds and also heads in that category for Jamaica.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony held at the IPL Hospitality Room at the National Stadium in Kingston, Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, Hon. Olivia Grange lauded the efforts of Ms. Edwards pointing out that she is an exemplar athlete, who has not only performed outstandingly, but is also giving back to her country.
“Not only has Simone made us proud, but she recognises that to receive, you also have to give and the fact that she received, she is also giving back,” she added.
She stated that donation plays a key role in the development of sports and implored other sectors of the society to contribute.
Declaring 2011 as the year of sports for women, Ms. Grange encouraged the young female athletes to continue striving for the best.
President, Jamaica Olympic Foundation, Mike Fennell, said it is the dream of Ms. Edwards to see many more Jamaicans play in the WNBA.
“Hopefully, someday this little benefit that you are receiving today will turn you into someone, who will provide benefits for others as well in the future. You are representing the next generation of basketball and I hope that this gift that you are receiving will inspire you,” he said.
Ms. Edwards’ foundation, Simone4Children, is a non-profit organisation created with the specific purpose of uplifting underprivileged children. She is also the recipient of the 2010 Ad Astra Award of the Immaculate Conception High School New York Chapter, which is presented to Jamaicans, who have excelled in their field over a period of time.