Mitzvot from the heart ­— Matthew Gibbs, United Hebrew Congregation

Matthew Gibbs’ mitzvah project became more personal after his much-loved basketball coach, Mark Morley, passed away.  Son of Julie and Ron Gibbs of Chesterfield, Matthew organized a basketball tournament that raised money for a fund that had been started in his coach’s name.  “I thought that it would be cool to start a 3-on-3 basketball tournament that benefited the Mark T. Morley Fund,” said Matthew.

Both the Gibbs and Morley families got involved by volunteering with the raffle, concessions and scorekeeping. Once the volunteers were in place, Matthew then distributed a flyer and e-mailed friends inviting kids, both boys and girls, to sign up. There were a total of 20 teams that played. “It truly was an amazing group effort,” said his mother. “It is something we will always remember.”

The tournament was a huge success as Matthew, a student at Parkway Central Middle School, raised more than $2,000. “The project was really fun for the players and the adults that came to watch,” he said.  “It also went to a good cause for someone that mattered to me,”

Monies from the Mark Morley Memorial Fund are used to give grants to students in the Parkway District. Proceeds from the fund go to the Parkway Alumni Association’s Granting Dreams Program. Granting Dreams provides students with educational opportunities that are above and beyond the scope of the classroom.

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