My name is Matthew Madoian, one of the co-founders of Hoops4Hayastan. Unlike Garen, I am not 100% Armenian and I did not grow up immersed in the Armenian community in Rhode Island. However, the path my life has taken and how I represent myself has to do with my Armenian heritage.
In the Summer of 2015, I was contacted to play basketball in the Pan Armenian Games. This was my first major Armenian event; one that introduced me to the country where my family was from. This lead to the opportunity to represent Armenia on a global stage, the U20 Armenia National Team. I did not realize how strong the Armenian culture is until I put that jersey on, which made me feel blessed to be a part of it.
After spending time in Armenia as a member of the National team, I felt a responsibility to give back. What better way than to give the children of Armenia the chance to learn and play the game of basketball; an opportunity I was given at the age of five and helped me become the man I am today.