Higher Education and Nonprofits

Foundation tipping off Battle of the Brackets

March 5, 2018
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GR8 Sports Great Kids Battle of the Brackets trophy
The GR 8 Sports, Great Kids Battle of the Brackets trophy. Courtesy Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation

A fundraiser will begin this month to help fund after-school athletics for K-8 students at Grand Rapids Public Schools.

GR8 Sports, Great Kids, a division of the Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation, will host a Battle of the Brackets challenge during March Madness.

During the challenge, area business participants will fill out predictions for March Madness results, competing with other companies to determine who knows the most about college basketball.

March Madness, which takes place March 13 to April 2 this year, is a single-elimination basketball tournament featuring teams in Division 1 of the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

To participate in the challenge, companies are asked to make a single $1,000 contribution to GR8 Sports, Great Kids.

This year, GRPS will provide after-school athletics for more than 5,400 K-8 students at no cost. GR8 Sports, Great Kids relies on donations to continue offering 15 middle school sports and six elementary sports at GRPS.

Nearly 80 percent of GRPS students qualify for free or reduced lunch.

“Participating in sports is essential to learning teamwork and building a competitive spirit, both of which are critical to success in school and life,” said Cara Jones, director, GR8 Sports, Great Kids.

“With the Battle of the Brackets challenge, businesses throughout Grand Rapids can vie for bragging rights as the most knowledgeable college basketball fans, while more importantly, providing vital support to our community’s children.”

So far, two dozen companies have signed up to compete, including Meijer, Miller Johnson, Rockford Construction and Steelcase.

Companies can sign up online.

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