David 'Wagga' Hunt Foundation classic clash between Kingston College and Calabar resumes after two-year break

By Sports Desk August 19, 2022

The 12th Annual David “Wagga” Hunt Football Classic kicks off on Saturday, August 20, at 4:00 pm with a clash between defending Manning Cup and Olivier Shield Champions Kingston College and Calabar High School at Calabar High School on Red Hills Road in Kingston.

The goodwill game is the David “Wagga” Hunt Scholarship Foundation’s way of reintroducing the Classic following the two-year hiatus caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Classic was established in 2009 in honour of the late David “Wagga” Hunt, a KC alum, who was a football coach and is also credited with reviving the sport at Calabar.

In 2005, Hunt coached Calabar to their first ever Manning Cup title in 28 years. Calabar also won the coveted Olivier Shield title that year.

The Classic is seen as a unifying force, emblematic of the generosity of spirit and community that Hunt embodied.

Hunt’s dedication to working with youth is the driving force behind the preservation of his legacy since his death in 2007. His mantra for the long-running rivalry between the schools was, “We can be rivals, not enemies.”

Since his passing, the foundation created in his memory offers scholarships to deserving students of both schools.

“I am very proud of the work the DWH Foundation has done since inception and I am eagerly looking forward to our abbreviated Classic, which will be our 12th staging,” said Christopher Hunt, David’s younger, who is also co-chair of the Washington, DC, based foundation.

He disclosed that for the upcoming 2022-2023 school year, the foundation 24 will benefit from scholarships valued at USD$17,000 (J$2.4 million).

“I am very proud and appreciative that we are able to continue to keep David’s memory alive while impacting our boys from both schools,” Christopher said.

Since 2009 the scholarship initiative has disbursed approximately US$5,000 (J$700,000) per selected student, from grades 8 to 13, to defray costs of tuition, books, lunch, technology assistance, and other school-related expenses.

To date, 35 scholarships exceeding US$115,000 (J$16 million) have been awarded to recipients, who are selected based on academic performance and attitude, involvement in extracurricular activities and need.

Through the years, corporate donors based in Jamaica have supported the foundation’s work. They include VM Group, Supreme Ventures Limited, Proven Wealth and the Gibson McCook Relays.

Overseas sponsors GraceKennedy Foods (USA), Steuart Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, Spencer Financial, and McIntosh & Associates complete the complement of corporate donors.

All fund the scholarships on an ongoing basis. 

“I wish to express heartfelt gratitude to our corporate and individual sponsors for sticking with us throughout the Covid-19 pandemic despite the constraints,” said Arnold “Dullo” McDonald, co-chair of the foundation’s Jamaica chapter.

“We thank our supporters and spectators of the annual football classic as well.  The goodwill game is being presented as a show of appreciation. We hope they enjoy this in-person event.”

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