Our mission

The High Five Hope program is designed to help children experience greater self-esteem, confidence, and most importantly, happiness and hope, through the power of sport.   Our program focuses on 5 core values

Teamwork, Respect, Commitment, Well-being, Honesty

Our Genesis – A Story of Unintended Consequences

Our founder, Bill Hilf, was in Cebu on a business trip. There are two things to know about Bill – he doesn’t sleep much and has a really hard time with directions.  This is his story.

“I went out for a morning run in Cebu, and got completely lost.  It was one of Cebu City’s poorest areas.”

“I came across street kids playing basketball.  They were using a metal rim nailed to a tree, no net, it was in a dirt lot, and none of them had shoes. 

“I stopped to watch and started to shoot hoops with them.  There was a language barrier, but they all had a great time, and seemed to think I was pretty funny.   As a 6’4’ balding white guy I guess I tended to stand out in the Philippines.

“I went back to my run, some of the kids came with me.  And after a few blocks there was another busted up hoop with kids playing, so we all stopped and played with the new group.

Basketballs were in short supply, and the children had improvised with rags tightly wrapped into a ball.

“I went back to my hotel, and a day of meetings, but I couldn’t shake the thought of those kids”

At the end of his meetings, Bill got into a cab, went to a sporting goods store, and filled the cab with basketballs.  He went back to the dirt lot and found the children were still playing.

His life, and the lives of many impoverished street children, were about to change forever.

 

The Proven Power of Sport

The way we see it, every child deserves the opportunity to develop, to smile and to have greater hope!  It is a view shared by our partners and sponsors, and together we have designed a safe, pragmatic program, carefully structured and designed to best serve the needs of street children.

High Five Hope aims to bring the power of structured, supportive sports programs to street children in the Philippines, to enrich their lives and help them transcend the soul- destroying environment of homelessness and poverty on the streets.

It has proven a success. Through sports, role models and by focusing on the five core values of High Five Hope,  we are able to instill life lessons to children exposed to drugs, prostitution, violence, hunger and crime.

 

From Hoops to Hope

Initially, Bill put his Basketball coaching clinic together in Thailand at a Burmese refugee camp.  There he found the children did not know what a high five was, and it was at that point that the name “High Five Hope” was born. From this beginning we look to the future, and continued success.

Through the on-going partnerships with local non-profit organizations, we are widening our activities, and are able to offer the program to more children and increase the range of activities.

We are now concentrated in the Philippines where we have created a sustainable program, aiming to increase its impact year by year.  At our first tournament in Manila, kids were barefoot, girls played volleyball with a ripped net in the dirt.

We have children who have been in the program since our launch in 2008.  For some, the change can be very significant, and we are expanding our mission to help the children become ‘life coaches’ to others in their community as well.  But, we’ve also had children who have died on the streets, one was murdered in a gang fight, and many have gone missing. Such tragedies are reminders of the truly difficult environment from which these kids come.   Our work goes on.

From Hoops to Sports

The program has been expanded to include a variety of sports particulalry girls’ volleyball and futkal – a type of street soccer. And in line with this expansion, our tagline “Bringing Hope Through Hoops” has become:

“Bringing Hope Through Sports!”

 

We’re excited to have you join us on this journey