By the end of the evening after clean-up, the kids gathered for a group photo on a stage that was previously used for bagging lentils. With the tasks at hand completed, they had all gone into “play” mode. Loud laughter and horseplay forced parents to resort to firm voices to get them to settle down.
It all ceased when actor Quinton Aaron walked through the door.
There were a flood of hushed voices moments before every kid in the building surrounded the 6'8" actor onstage for autographs and pictures. Some kids even produced crayons to get the job done. Aaron, already late for a previous engagement, issued no complaints and was extremely patient with each stunned child as he confessed to a 22" shoe size. Even the adult volunteer cooks from Rocky Peak Church, who hadn’t left the kitchen all evening, emerged to have their picture taken with the Blind Side star.
Quinton Aaron is a huge (no pun intended) supporter of the Hope of The Valley Rescue Mission and previously attended its Thanksgiving Homeless Event with celebrities such as Cedric The Entertainer, Jalen Rose, Jerry West and Jeffrey Osborne. CAVS Youth Basketball joins these celebrities in support of the organization, which strives to meet the needs of every hungry and homeless man, woman and child in the valley. The organization has served over 40,000 hot nutritious meals, distributed over 16,000 articles of clothing, provided over 9,000 hygiene kits, 850 showers and numerous referrals for shelter—all in their first 24 months of operation, which originally began in 2009.
Despite the surprise appearance, the original event was meant to focus on the homeless and teach CAVS kids the true meaning of “giving back”. It wasn’t meant to focus on celebrity attendance. However, a leak confirmed that celebrities similar to those that attended Hope of The Valley’s Thanksgiving event were scheduled to appear last night —Quinton Aaron being one of them. This forced CAVS organizers to at least attempt to contact Aaron and other celebs that were named—all seemingly to no avail.
“The situation was pretty bleak. It was the 99th hour and everyone had previous obligations.”
Devereaux received a confirmation forwarded directly from Quinton Aaron’s iphone that he would “stop through for a bit.”
He kept his word.
Both CAVS Youth Basketball and Quinton Aaron are likely candidates for future Ambassadors for the Hope of The Valley organization, where leaders like President & CEO Ken Craft and Director of Community Relations, Jonathan Leeper, through operations, are striving to feed every hungry man, woman and child in the San Fernando Valley.
CAVS Youth Basketball, a leader in youth sports for over 24 years, has provided professional athletic training, financial scholarships, personal and academic development, moral and social support to thousands of young boys and girls throughout the San Fernando Valley, ranging in age from as young as 4-17. Such a history has yielded a consistent track record of keeping youth supported, off of the streets and free from illegal substances and activities, enabling them to become sound, productive members of the community. Many of these boys and girls have advanced to high school, college and professional sports levels--some even returning to the program years later, with their own kids.
In 2012, CAVS Youth Basketball is set to expand its steadily-growing athletic program to provide educational tutoring in core subjects such as reading, math and science, increased community volunteer services through Hope of The Valley, overall youth mentoring, an athletic league for girls, additional scholarships for underprivileged youth and will host multiple toy drives for the M.E.N.D. (Meet Each Need With Dignity) charity beginning the 14th of this month.
Photos of last night’s event are already posted through the CAVS Youth Basketball Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/
“Quinton Aaron is a humble, gentle giant.” Devereaux stated. “We never expected him to show, but we’re glad he did!”
For more information on CAVS Youth Basketball and its future efforts with Hope of The Valley Rescue Mission, all interested parties can visit the organization’
# # #
ABOUT CAVS YOUTH BASKETBALL
Founded in 1988, CAVS Youth Basketball is one of the longest-tenured, most respected AAU Youth Basketball programs in the state, featuring uniquely-structured, NBA-style training for boys and girls, 5-15. It is a high-quality, professional program where many past players have advanced to high school, college and professional basketball levels. Achievement is measured not only by athletic performance, but also through personal and academic development, with players across all age divisions holding grade point averages of 3.5 or better. CAVS Youth Basketball gives back to the community by sponsoring underprivileged youth, feeding the homeless, mentoring youth of all ages and volunteering for community outreach events.