This 37th induction ceremony marks significant milestones for the Cricket Hall of Fame (CHOF). With a captive audience of over 200 esteem inductees and honorees as Alumni, CHOF now has the capacity to cultivate mindsets that constantly seeks opportunities to develop the enterprise of cricket “with causes.” Grounded in American pragmatism, cricket with causes will fuel ambitions in people at different stages of life, career, and vocation to stay relevant and productively engaged with their local communities.
These causes are also larger than individual personality politics. They promote purposeful Research-to-Practice-Partnerships with strategic visions for sustainable socio-economic development of cricket in ways not available if groups or individuals were working separately towards their self-interests.
Sustainable development needs trusted spaces for reflective discourse informed by rich data. After 37 years of honoring who serve, the CHOF is in a unique position of trust to promote deeply collaborative Research-to-Practice-Partnerships among stakeholders with different and often competing interests. In this space, stakeholders will coalesce around shared interests in cricket in ways that bridge workforce quality-of-life development gaps between formal education, informal learning, and meaningful vocations. CHOF, in partnership with EDSN, are taking small steps towards bridging these gaps.
For those not familiar with EDSN, we are an association that advances long-term Research-to-Practice- Partnerships (RPP) with enterprising community organizations such as the CHOF to access education (i.e. creation, transmission, and use of knowledge) conveniences, and opportunities emerging technologies afford, while managing shared obligations and other side effects these technologies bring. You can find more details about EDSN at www.edsn.org.
A CHOF scholarship for Stephan Pink, from Kingston, Jamaica, to attend the University of the West Indies is one of these small steps. The Jamaica Progressive League of Hartford’s cricket club is the lead sponsor for this scholarship. Stephan came to Hartford, Connecticut for the summer during which he played cricket in the park. Playing cricket provided opportunities for cricket clubs in Greater Hartford to learn about Stephan’s academic achievements, and enterprising attitude. The CHOF scholarship program facilitated collaboration with the League and other cricket clubs to make this scholarship possible.
Lessons learned from CHOF scholarship program over the years have inspired another small step: to establish a Cricket Hall of Fame Development Trust Fund. A trust fund will allow the CHOF to move beyond just honoring people, to filling important development gaps necessary for maintaining the spirit and soul of the game with causes larger than ourselves. With the right mindset, we could exceed executive director’s Michael Chambers vision of growing this trust fund to $2,000,000 in five years.
The development fund will also support programs for research, entrepreneurial philanthropy, health and welfare to benefit those who have contributed to the growth and development of cricket in the United States. According to director Chambers, “At the Hall, we take the view that helping people is the foundation which sustains the cricket ecosystem. To us, people have value before, during, and after their days on the cricket field at school or in a test match.”
Finally, the CHOF website (www.crickethof.org) is evolving as the main communication hub among partners and participating organizations. For example, the event calendar presents events of organizations in one place. Organizations can directly post flyers of their events for free. The A-Z index has detail, and up-to-date information inductees and honorees. In addition, CHOF is establishing partnerships to develop useful surveys and informatics that will help to support the evolving enterprise cricket in the United States.
These are exciting times at the CHOF. EDSN is grateful to be in long-term partnership with CHOF. Visions and leadership of Mr. Michael Chambers and his board of directors in promoting cricket with causes larger than individual self-interests are all inspiring. These men and women are creating a legacy that will continue to play a significant role in the development of cricket for a long time.
Lynroy Grant is director of Research to Practice and Community Engagement for Development at Education for Development and Support Network (EDSN) Foundation, www.edsn.org. He can be reached by email: director@EDSN.org, or Phone: (860) 243-5525