The athletes of Castleton State College are teaming up to make sure kids in underprivileged countries have the opportunity to play sports too.
Working with Right To Play, an international foundation that gives underprivileged children an opportunity to make their lives better by playing sports, Lindsey Gullet, a Castleton senior ice hockey player, has some big plans.
To raise money to buy sports equipment for underprivileged kids across the globe, Gullet plans to hold the world’s longest dodge ball game here on campus. He plans to have athletes participate by playing or volunteering and getting pledges for their efforts.
Gullet is working with the Right To Play USA National Director Lindsay Hower. In recent phone interview, Hower said she loves the interest Gullet has taken in the organization.
“Most find our mission inspiring because the power of sport is so universal. No matter where you’re from, sport is immediately understood as a catalyst for teamwork, self-confidence, health and more,” Hower said. “Right To Play’s core competency really is deploying a ‘train the trainer’ model for teachers and community leaders.”
Gullet realizes this goal and wants to help Castleton students understand the same.
“It will help athletes get to know one another and gel with one another,” Gullet said.
He believes many people will be up for the challenge in the spring because it’s for a good cause, boosts Spartan pride and it has the extra incentive of possibly getting their names in the Guinness Book of World Records.
Gullet brought the charity to Castleton because he believes everyone should have the opportunity to play sports and because sometimes we take it for granted. Castleton is the fourth college in the United States to start a Right To Play Others include Stanford, Brown, and Fordham University.
Castleton State College President Dave Wolk said he’s behind Gullet and his ideas 100 percent.
“The idea is ingenious, “Wolk said. “It’s a win-win-win all the way around.”
Gullet, who admits he got the idea of breaking a record from watching Regis and Kelly, said dodge ball is good because it isn’t weather dependant and people can stand there for a bit, throw the ball and it still constitutes playing. The current record is between 30 and 36 hours, so the plan for the game at Castleton is to be somewhere between 40 and 44 hours, he said.
Kaitlin Hayes, a Castleton senior women’s ice hockey player and a member of the Right to Play group on campus, is psyched about the event.
“It’s really great he [Gullet] brought it to Castleton. It helps put Castleton on the map and fund-raise for kids in poverty-ridden countries,” Hayes said.
Gullet knows the almost two-day event will be draining, but he encourages people to stay focused on the goals.
“Where would you be in your life without sports?” Gullet asked. “We wouldn’t all be here at Castleton. We’ve gained a network through sport.”
He is still waiting to hear from Guinness World Records about his application and to learn all the exact details and rules for inclusion.
In the meantime, he wants everyone to just keep spreading the word about the organization and get excited about breaking a world record.
“After all,” said Gullet, “Records are made to be broken.”