SADD to host first dodgeball tournament fundraiser since 2018


Credit: Sneha Saju & Alyssa Ao

Recently delivered dodgeballs wait to be inflated for the SADD tournament on Saturday evening. The annual event was disrupted due to COVID-19, but it has returned after two years. “Our goal for the dodgeball tournament is to raise money for our club so we have the ability to do fun events later in the year,” senior Haley Melvin said.

Sneha Saju and Alyssa Ao

SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) is holding its first fundraising event of the school year tomorrow at 7 p.m., a spirit week dodgeball tournament.

This will be SADD’s first annual dodgeball tournament since the fall of 2018, when the current seniors were freshmen. Teams of six will pay $30 to participate, calling for $5 from each player. Team uniforms are highly recommended and the best uniforms will win a prize.

“SADD used to do an annual dodgeball tournament for years, but the club stopped doing it a few years ago,” senior and one of the SADD leaders Haley Melvin said. “When it came to planning an event for this year, we really wanted to bring that tradition back. The leaders had three or four meetings to discuss our plans for the event and to work through all the little things to make sure the event will run smoothly.”

The goal for the dodgeball tournament is to offer a fun school event for students to attend, while raising money for the club and other future plans including speakers and conferences. Ideas for the coming year include a winter week presentation, more weekend events and community building in the school to encourage connections between students.

“In the past, we’ve had whole community events,” club advisor John Berry said. “We used to do a fall festival where families would come in. We had bouncy houses, games, pumpkin painting and things like that. We’ve had speakers come in, we’ve had educational campaigns that we run throughout the school and we’ve had parent information nights.”

SADD began in Wayland as Students Against Drunk Driving. SADD strives to inform students about the real dangers of unhealthy risk taking, especially when that risk involves drugs and alcohol. Over the course of thirty years, the club’s aims have broadened to helping students make safer choices in general. The foundation for SADD as a student-led organization is informing peers about health issues on the rise.

“The leaders meet before school at least once a week to plan club meetings and events, and we review topics we want our group to focus on,” Melvin said.

The dodgeball event kicks off spirit week with Saturday night fun, and it provides SADD with resources to continue bringing awareness to health issues. Without the limitations of COVID-19, future events will bring students together and help the school improve on safety issues as a community.

“SADD is important to WHS because it teaches students how to avoid dangerous situations,” Melvin said. “It also provides members with people they can rely on for help if they are ever in a tough situation.”