Community Voices

Krop students begin Sports Nation Foundation to raise awareness of breast cancer

Joshua Rub and Dylan Hopen are founders of Sports Nation Foundation. They organize events that encourage kids to be active in sports while raising funds for health issues.
Joshua Rub and Dylan Hopen are founders of Sports Nation Foundation. They organize events that encourage kids to be active in sports while raising funds for health issues. Photo provided to the Miami Herald

Friends Dylan Hopen and Joshua Rub are just 16 years old, but they already know the importance of living active lives to help those in need. Now they want to encourage other students to do the same.

The juniors at Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School in Northeast Miami-Dade began Sports Nation Foundation in October.

“We were inspired when a few of our classmates gave a presentation on the implications of cancer and we were both shocked at the alarming statistics they presented,” Dylan said in email. “We immediately wanted to know what we could do to help. So that day, Josh and I met after school and discussed ways to raise awareness for breast cancer. It was agreed that a flag football tournament would proliferate awareness for breast cancer and engage kids in outdoor physical activity, tackling two important issues.”

The event, in partnership with the National Breast Cancer Foundation, raised over $300 and had more than 50 people involved in the game, he said. All the money was donated for breast cancer research and awareness.

The mission is to help kids “immerse themselves in physical activities while raising money for a diverse spectrum of health issues on a monthly basis.”

“At our flag football tournament on Oct. 29th at Ives Estates Park, we focused on raising awareness for breast cancer by discussing the implications revolving around it in between each game,” Dylan said. “The event was really meaningful to us, in so far as we wanted to get kids playing outside and really engaging in physical activity. A lot of positive feedback was given to us via social media, thanking us for hosting the event and commending our efforts to proliferate awareness for an issue that is highly underreported.”

Dylan and Josh said Sports Nation Foundation has other events planned with the goal to get many students involved. They also want to continue hosting sports fundraisers through college and after.

“I have always had a strong passion for getting my friends involved in doing two things — giving back to their community and playing football with me on the weekends. I decided I wanted to expand this to not only my friends, but to everyone around me. That’s why Sports Nation Foundation was created, so Dylan and I could encourage people everywhere to contribute while having fun at the same time,” Josh said.

Dylan said that empowering kids at a young age helps them become more aware of the issues and fosters participation.

“We feel it is critical to set an example and get kids motivated by inspiring a desire to help others.”

To learn more, donate or get involved write Dylanhopen95@gmail.com or Joshua.Rub21@gmail.com or visit www.sportsnationfoundation.com.

HAPPY 100th BIRTHDAY!

Congratulations to Bernard Frank, also known as “the Judge,“ who celebrated his 100th birthday on Nov 29. His friend Lori McWilliams wrote to say that Frank “is quite a character and has a wealth of stories to tell about Miami/Miami Beach not only in the last 100 years but especially in the ’50s and ’60s.”

“The Judge is a true native son of Miami. Born one hundred years ago in Miami, Bernie has spent his entire life living in the sunshine of Miami and Miami Beach,” McWilliams said in email. She said he graduated from Miami Beach High School and the University of Miami.

“Pursing his goal of becoming a lawyer, he proudly attended the University of Miami Law School and was admitted to the Florida Bar where he was a respected member from 1939 to 2015 — more than 70 years.

“He enlisted in the United States Army. During the years between 1942 and 1946, he fulfilled his patriotic duties in China, India and Burma. He was extremely proud to have served his country during this time in history,” she said. “He later served as a municipal judge, a public defender and as a criminal attorney, opening his own law practice in 1955.”

He and his wife, Edith, have been married for 47 years. McWilliams said Frank usually spends Sundays watching exciting tennis matches at the Jockey Club, where he now resides. He played tennis into his 80s.

“Bernie, you exemplify everything good about Miami — both its past and present,” McWilliams said. “You are a living example of a life well lived, and we are both proud and humble to be able to celebrate this adventure with you — 100 trips around the sun.”

YOUNG AMBASSADOR

Congratulations to 11-year-old Isabel del Valle McGuinness, who has been named Ambassador of the Year for the EarthKeepers Club at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Biscayne Nature Center. Isabel is a fifth-grader at Key Biscayne Community School who has been a member of the environmental kids club for over two years.

“We are so happy to have Isabel as part of our club,” said club president and founder Daelyn Einhorn, a freshman at Ransom Everglades School. “She is always so enthusiastic about the events and was great at introducing the BNC to over 40 new students.”

Daelyn, BNC executive director Theodora Long, and Director of Public Affairs Claudia Binelo presented Isabel with her trophy at the club’s first event of this school year on Nov. 12. Club members also spent time doing a beach cleanup and a Seagrass Adventure.

The EarthKeepers club has more than 300 members and a mailing list of 900 people from more than 20 schools. Membership is $1, in keeping with “the inclusive spirit of Marjory Stoneman Douglas.” Student members range in age from 4 to 16.

To learn about future cleanups and activities visit www.biscaynenaturecenter.org/kids_only/kids_only.html

HOLIDAY CONCERT

Brings family and friends to hear the Greater Miami Symphonic Band with guests “Greater Miami Voices” quartet at 8 p.m. Dec. 13 at Gusman Hall, University of Miami, 1314 Miller Dr., Coral Gables. The concert will feature seasonal favorites under the direction of Robert Longfield.

Tickets are $15 adults, $5 students/children over 5 years old, and are available at the box office the day of concert or in advance at http://gmsb.org/.

If you have news for this column, please send it to Christina Mayo at christinammayo@gmail.com.

  Comments