Ben Patch won World Championship and VNL bronze in 2018
Lausanne, Switzerland, April 15, 2020 – Ben Patch is putting his time in isolation to good use by using his hidden skills to help raise funds for charities involved in the fight against coronavirus.
The USA opposite is following the USA’s rules on isolation during the covid-19 outbreak after he returned to the USA when the German league, where he plays for Berlin Recycling Volleys, was suspended.
Patch is now back in his home state of Utah where he is juggling his volleyball fitness work with his time in a studio. There he makes pottery that he sells through the website be-assembly.com to raise much needed funds for charities helping medical projects.
“I have a friend I lived with in Berlin and she is also a ceramic artist,” he said. “I said, ‘Why don’t we start a brand as a charity, especially in this moment? We both have similar pottery styles. We want to raise money and we love ceramics. Why don’t we make this a thing?’
“Our goal is to get it big enough that we have multiple artists donating their work.”
The 25-year-old first developed his love of ceramics at middle school and later continued his love of pottery as part of his course at Brigham Young University (BYU) by studying fine arts as his minor.
While a student he helped BYU reach the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) championship finals two years in a row and soon after leaving in 2017 he was included in the USA squad for the FIVB Volleyball World League.
One year on he helped the USA win bronze at the Italy-Bulgaria 2018 FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship and the inaugural FIVB Volleyball Nations League.
He was on course for a German title with Berlin before the shut-down and was likely to be part of the USA squad at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
“We were undefeated in the German league, which was amazing,” he said. “We were moving in the direction of winning back-to-back championships when we got shut down. The end was not how we wanted to finish. We wanted to finish the year undefeated.
“I found myself in Utah with not as many friends as I had before and with different resources. I needed to find something to do.
“Pottery is actually the first thing that came into my life. Pottery was well before volleyball. I’ve done pottery for 13 or 14 years and volleyball for almost nine.”