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Local Players In Progress (PIP) Team Donates Talent and Money to Children’s Emergency Shelter

Local Players In Progress (PIP) Team Donates Talent and Money to Children’s

Emergency Shelter

PIP Team raises money and teaches basketball program to the Children’s Emergency Shelter youth.

The Children of the Fort Smith Children’s Emergency Shelter received more than a cash donation on Wednesday, July 23, 2014 from Charleston based Players In Progress Team.

PIP Coach, Kelly Kimmell, and her youth team (ages 6‐12 years old) wanted to make an impact on their community and share their talent too. “As a team, we decided to collect our spare change over the school year to donate to a local charity. PIP uses basketball skills to develop confidence and self‐esteem in kids. We are pleased to be at the Shelter today and donate $278.54 “spare change” collected by our team to the Children’s Emergency Shelter.”

In addition to the “spare change” donation, the PIP Team offered their talent to the 22 youth at the Children’s Emergency Shelter. The Charleston based PIPs performed a routine using basketball skills for the children at the Shelter followed by an interactive ball‐handling lesson. “Our kids were a little hesitant to participate at first, but by the end of the program all of the kids were showing off their newly learned ball‐handling skills. It was pretty cool watching our youth’s confidence level change in just a matter of minutes. The PIP Team certainly made an impact on our youth today,” said CES Advancement Coordinator Ashley Ahlert.

PIP uses basketball as a foundation to develop confidence and self‐esteem in youth. It is a sports and character‐building program that utilizes basketball as its arena. Coaches David and Brenda Land started the PIP Program in 1987 with one group in an effort to improve basketball skills through a positive program. Since, the program has grown to thousands in numerous states across the US. Coach Kelly Kimmell’s Charleston based PIP Team is the only team in the state of Arkansas. Her team recently performed at the Harlem Globetrotter’s half time performance at Verizon Arena.

The Children’s Emergency Shelter of Fort Smith provides shelter and care to area children ages 6‐17 who have been removed from the custody of their guardian by child welfare authorities. CES provides a home‐like environment to these abused and neglected children until an alternate placement can be procured. The Shelter is licensed to house up to 24 children at a time, and as many as 300 children will walk through its doors each year.

For further information on the Fort Smith Children’s Emergency Shelter, visit, “like” Children’s Emergency Shelter on Facebook, or call (479) 242‐5771.