BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Afternoon rains didn’t stop dozens of community members from competing in an outdoor volleyball tournament organized in hopes of raising money to benefit research to find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis. Now in it’s second year, the Spike Down Cystic Fibrosis tournament is one of many events organized to support the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation which goes on to help families living with the illness.
“Instead of asking family and friends for money and donating to my page, I wanted to host an event to get the community involved so the community could learn more about cystic fibrosis. Whenever they come here we can talk about this disease that affects people in our community,” said Rebecca Knight, who helped plan the event along with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s director of development, Julie Hall.
The winners of the tournament received prizes from sponsors, but the money raised at the event is the real gift. Each dollar collected goes toward directly benefiting those with the disease.
Jeff Ponche, a father of two children who live with Cystic Fibrosis, says the donations are a game-changer.
“It’s a genetic disease. My wife and I are both carriers of that gene and any children we have also have a one in four chance of having the disease. We have three children. Two of our children have it,” said Ponche. “There’s not a cure, but they’ve made a lot of progress in treating the disease. In 1999 the life expectancy of kids with [Cystic Fibrosis] was about in the early twenties. And now, its in the low-to-mid forties.”
The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s next event will be held July 27. Fourteen outstanding professionals in their field and in the community will be recognized for their professional accomplishments, their commitment to giving back, and their fundraising efforts for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Those wishing to donate to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation or participate in future events can learn more by clicking the link here.