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By now, you may have already heard the big news about our new Rise Against Hunger fantasy football league! Supporting COVID-19 relief efforts, the league will serve as a way for our Hunger Champions to have fun, connect with other champions and continue our movement toward ending world hunger. As the first week for fantasy football begins, we’re excited to introduce our commissioner, Payton Docheff. Not only is he our fantasy football expert — he is also our Kansas City Community Engagement Manager, and is very passionate about empowering volunteers worldwide to make a difference. Learn more about Payton and his passion for fantasy football in our Q&A below!

As the commissioner of the Rise Against Hunger Fantasy Football League, how did you come up with this idea? 

I had been in a few “charity leagues” before. The concept is to come together and do something that we totally would have done anyway…but for a good cause! This will be my third season hosting a fantasy football podcast, and second fantasy season while managing the Kansas City program for Rise Against Hunger. I figured it was high time I combined my work life and my fake work life to both make a difference for the communities we serve, as well as encourage other fantasy gamers to do the same. 

How long has football been a passion of yours? 

I played in my first league when I was in middle school, and each season became more competitive than the last. This year I’m in six leagues and I adjust my rankings every night before bed. Look at me now!

What is fantasy football? 

Beautiful question. It’s where you — in some way, shape, or form — create a team of NFL players that accumulate points based on how they play in real life. You do your best to score more points than your opponents. There are plenty of styles, but the gist is: root for your team; crush your leaguemates. 

What advice would you give to someone who’s joining the league and learning about fantasy football for the first time?

Pick players you like! It’s just for fun, and you’re already making a meaningful impact. It’s your team, and at the end of the day, you want to be able to cheer for your players with all of your heart. Don’t know any of the players? Well…try to find someone you like this year so you can draft him next year!

As people get ready for football season, how can they also prepare for the Fantasy Feeds Impact League?

The beauty of this league is that once the draft is over, it’s hands off. The computer generates your best possible lineup, and all folks need to do is sit back and wait patiently for my charming and informative scoring updates. The way to prepare for drafts, or to get the upper hand in your traditional season leagues, however, is to listen to the Crossroads Fantasy Football Podcast and to keep a www.crossroadsfantasyfootball tab up on your browser. Always. 

How will  members be able to connect with you and one another during this unprecedented time? 

Each division of the Fantasy Feeds Impact League has its own league chat! I’ve already had a few chats through text and email with people I’ve never met. But I’m their Commissioner, so I love them deeply and equally. 

How will this league support the efforts of Rise Against Hunger’s mission to end world hunger? 

Each spot in the Fantasy Feeds Impact League came with a $50 donation to Rise Against Hunger. All told, we raised almost $4,000 dollars to support the communities we serve around the world. Next year, we’re doubling it. The year after that…you get it. 

Serving as the commissioner for the Rise Against Hunger Fantasy Football League, what is one thing you hope members take away from this experience? 

The Fantasy Feeds Impact League is just one way we can get connected to a mission that amplifies the voices of those outside of our immediate context. And hey, turning league fees into a donation probably wasn’t too much of a sacrifice, was it? There are plenty of other ways you can make an impact that are just as simple. Try to uncover any untapped opportunities to mobilize meaningful change — even with the small stuff. Also…want a challenge? Invite someone new to play with us next year. Helping to end world hunger by playing fantasy football isn’t a bad way to start off the fall!

Want to support our COVID-19 relief efforts through our fantasy football league? Donate now!

Shared in Blog, Growing the Movement