Plymouth brothers shoot hoops for Ukraine, raise $25K

The campaign started by a pair of brothers from Plymouth to raise money for Ukrainian refugees by "selling" made three-pointers and free throws has taken off — ranking in over $25,000 and becoming an international effort, with donations and baskets coming in from across the world. 

"They started with a $500 goal in mind, which I thought I was going to have to contribute into probably $499, and we're at $25,000 today," the boy's mother, Aneta Mendoza told FOX 9.

Their youth-powered campaign has grown so large the boys, 10-year-old Benjamin and 12-year-old Nathaniel, have had to recruit some help to make the 5,000 3-pointers. Their team is now 120 strong, with roughly half in Minnesota and the rest hailing from across the country and the world, including participants in Puerto Rico, Poland, Romania, Australia, Germany and Switzerland. On Saturday a few dozen got to it, with a 3-point and free throw shooting event at The Dish Lab in Bloomington.

10-year-old Benjamin and 12-year-old Nathaniel have used basketball to raise over 25,00 for Ukrainian refugees in Poland.

10-year-old Benjamin and 12-year-old Nathaniel have used basketball to raise over 25,000 for Ukrainian refugees in Poland.  (FOX 9)

Aneta Mendoza is originally from Jastrzebie Zdroj, a city in Southern Poland that is taking in hundreds of Ukrainian refugees. She said she is coordinating with the city government there to determine where the need is the greatest, with the plan being to purchase and ship whatever is needed, including food, clothing and supplies.

Their game plan has also grabbed the attention of the hometown team, "They got invited to Timberwolves [versus] Lakers game on Wednesday, the first 35 kids to join will be attending that game," Aneta finished.

A 10-day fundraising challenge has been born and shared on social media, selling basketball shots to raise money for Ukraine: $1for free throws and $3 for three-pointers.

Initially, the family planned to accept donations for ten days, but now because of increased interest, they will continue to accept donations to Venmo account @threepointersforUkraine through March 20.

They have also a GoFundMe page, and Aneta is using Facebook to share updates about their progress. 

People can also donate new clothing for newborns through youth clothing or write a card to one of the refugee children who will be arriving in Jastrzebie Zdroj. If you would like to arrange a donation, email Aneta directly at