Skip to content

Richmond student-led charity pickleball tournament raises $8.5K for cancer

The second annual Play for Hope tournament was held on Jan. 20 at Cambie secondary.

A student-led charity pickleball tournament in support of cancer research ended with a bang after exceeding its fundraising goal by almost $4,000.

"I am super proud of what we have accomplished," said Alexandra Mejia, one of the organizers of the second annual Play for Hope tournament at Cambie secondary.

The tournament, featuring 64 local pickleball players, had gone on without a hitch last Saturday despite a snow-filled week.

Mejia and co-organizer Maya Parmar, both Grade 11 students at Cambie secondary, told the Richmond News they were nervous leading up to the event but immediately felt "the love, support and encouragement" once people started coming in.

"Watching my peers on the day of the tournament interact and enjoy conversing with the players was refreshing to witness," said Parmar.

The fundraising goal for the event was $5,000, but thanks to the generosity of players and the community, they managed to raise $8,488.58 for the Canadian Cancer Society.

Local organizations donated 43 items for the online and in-person raffle, which was a "huge hit," and two elementary school students, Caitlyn Ho and Keira Yip, raised more than $1,100 selling pickleball swag.

The pair added the highlight of organizing the event was the opportunity to work with teacher Linda Wong, whose passion lies in pickleball and fundraising for the Canadian Cancer Society.

"We could not have done any of this without her, and I am forever grateful for all that she has done for us. Ms. Wong is such a strong and loving person. She has supported, encouraged, and led us all throughout," said Mejia.

The feeling was reciprocated by Wong, who told the News Mejia and Parmar met her high expectations and delivered "a first-class event."

Not only was the tournament a successful fundraiser, said the organizers, but community members were also able to form many relationships over the past two years.

"I will be awaiting next year’s tournament with high hopes and can’t wait to see what Ms. Wong has in store for us," said Parmar.

Got an opinion on this story or any others in Richmond? Send us a letter or email your thoughts or story tips to [email protected].