Groups join for social justice

On Saturday, Jan. 25 the Wilfrid Laurier University Mighty Hawks held a pool tournament in support of Live4Love, a social awareness organization that runs in the Kitchener-Waterloo community. The tournament took place at the Break Room and was a partnership between the Mighty Hawks and Live4Love members.

This was the first year that the event has been held.

The tournament saw the participation of 18 teams and about 45-50 individuals.  The participants – who included Enactus members, members of Live 4 Love, Laurier students and members of the Kitchener-Waterloo community – enjoyed themselves according to the event runners.

“I honestly had a blast,” Daniel Gray, director of marketing for Enactus, said.

Mighty Hawks is a program that belongs to Enactus, a business club at Laurier, that works to use social entrepreneurship to help teach students business skills, but also to make social change.

Live4Love, whose main program is entitled “Never Alone Program,” focuses on changing the negative aspects of a child’s life into something positive.

“We gather once a month with kids who are going through different adversity, disabilities or broken homes and provide them with a fun, inclusive atmosphere that they can get involved in and give them support and love,” explained Alex DeCiantis, the co-founder of Live4Love.

It was DeCiantis, also the program manager for Enactus, who brought the idea to the table to partner up with the Mighty Hawks. Mighty Hawks, like Live4Love, is dedicated to showing love and support to others, but more specifically adults with mental disabilities.

It was the adult members of Mighty Hawks, however,  who asked if a pool tournament could be created.

“They like to play pool every Saturday anyway, so why not create a fun event that involved everyone?” said Sarah MacNeil, program manager for the Mighty Hawks.

“I was completely game for that,” DeCiantis added.

MacNeil and Adam Nicolaou, program co-manager of the Mighty Hawks, decided to help put the event into action.

“The adults with mental disabilities love to volunteer and love to know that they’re giving money to a good cause. We felt like Live4Love was like us,” MacNeil explained.

While the focus of the event was getting the community together to play pool, $319.00 was raised through donations that will be  funding one of the future gatherings with the kids in Live4Love.

“We don’t do a ton of events during the year, but anytime we can get everyone together to celebrate the work they’ve put together and partnerships we can do as a team it means a lot to us. That’s what we’re about,” Gray concluded.

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