Gotta Have Faith
By TAYLOR ODISHO
ENF Communications Asst.
Despite finishing sixth in her final Hoop Shoot competition, Faith Sjoberg walked off the court at Loyola University last April with the confidence of a champion.
Over the course of six years including three straight Finals appearances and a third-
The Faith who walked off the court that day in April possibly wouldn’t recognize the one who walked on six years earlier.
“My life wouldn’t be the same if I didn’t participate in the Elks Hoop Shoot,” Faith says. “The lessons, experiences, memories and friendships will last a lifetime.”
She’s not alone. Data collected in a recent evaluation of the Hoop Shoot Program suggests that girls who stick with the program develop higher levels of perseverance. The growth was more dramatic than among their male counterparts.
For example, among the 8-
Sue Sjoberg, Faith’s mom, didn’t need to see the evaluation results to believe it. After Faith’s defeat at the 2018 Finals, Sue said, “I think the lessons from the loss may take her further in her high school playing career, and life in general.”
Faith is now playing for her high school team. She’s also the freshman class secretary. Her mom and dad, meanwhile, have joined the Elks. The Hoop Shoot changes parents, too. They’re members of Presque Isle, Maine, Lodge No. 1954.
All three of them expect to volunteer regularly at local, district and state Hoop Shoot contests.
The Elks have been developing gritty kids through the Hoop Shoot program for more than 46 years. In 2018-