Houston's Mission Squash to Open First Ever Squash Facility Within a Partner School

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First-of-its-kind squash and education facility opening at Hogg Middle School in the Houston Heights

Mission Squash opens new facility at Hogg Middle School

Mission Squash opens new facility at Hogg Middle School in Houston

"The abundance of 'firsts' we have achieved is quite remarkable. We have elaborated on the urban squash formula to create an innovative and completely new model of youth development for the underserved children of Houston."

Mission Squash, a Houston based intensive after-school urban youth development program, is proud to announce that its urban squash programs will now be take place at its new on-campus facility at Hogg Middle School in the Houston Heights.

With 18 urban squash programs nationwide, Mission Squash is the first program of its kind in Texas, and the first ever to have a facility located within its partner school. As a result, HISD's Hogg Middle School is now the first public school in the U.S. to house squash courts and the first in Texas to offer in-school squash courses for P.E. credit.

Part of the urban squash movement, the Mission Squash Program combines athletic coaching in the sport of squash with academic tutoring, community service and college preparation to advance the lives of Houston’s urban youth in grades 6-12, all free of charge.

"The abundance of 'firsts' we have achieved is quite remarkable," says Brian DiFilippo, the program's Assistant Executive Director. "We have elaborated on the urban squash formula — already unique in itself — to create an innovative and completely new model of youth development for the underserved children of Houston. Many of our students lack adequate encouragement, confidence, and support from their surrounding social environments. Our ultimate goal is to give these children the tools to excel on and off the court and to instill in them the integrity and character to become active, caring, and productive members of their communities as adults."

Mission Squash will be hosting a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of its new squash courts at Hogg Middle School in the Houston Heights. Starting at 2 p.m. August 29, 2015, the ceremony will take place at the Mission Squash Facility at Hogg Middle School, located at 1100 Merrill Street, Houston, TX 77009. Around 3 p.m., Hogg families and other community members are invited to an open house event featuring squash exhibition matches, coaching, and facility tours.

The state-of-the-art squash and education facility was constructed out of an existing, but underutilized gym at no cost to the school. The renovated space now includes three international-sized squash courts, a multipurpose learning center, locker rooms, and an academic lab with a full-capacity classroom and multimedia education tools.

"It will pay intangible dividends to local students for years to come as Mission Squash grows its program to the local elementary and high schools," says DiFilippo. "Because of the on-campus location, we are positioned to create a pipeline of opportunity for students of all ages in the community, thereby guiding them from their earliest years and on into the successes of high school, college, and professional life."

Starting fall 2015, Mission Squash will provide squash courses during school hours to Hogg students, increasing the program's total capacity from 24 to 132 students each semester.

For more information or to register for the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony please contact Alistair Barnes at (281) 380-5616.

About Mission Squash
Founded in 2011 in Houston by Alistair Barnes, Mission Squash is an urban youth development program that combines academic enrichment with athletic training in the sport of squash. The program aims to give youth from underprivileged homes the opportunity to make a better future for themselves by staying in school, graduating and aspiring to college while at the same time improving their health and fitness through the game of squash. All activities are provided free of charge to students in the program as Mission Squash, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit, functions solely through charitable donations from the surrounding community.

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Alistair Barnes
Mission Squash
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