It all started on Mother’s Day in 2011. That’s when Team IMPACT made its first match when it was arranged that a young boy named Ben would become a member of the Saint Anselm’s men’s hockey team.

More than five years later, Team IMPACT, which is based in Quincy, Mass., has matched more than 1,000 children who suffer from life-threatening or chronic illnesses with more than 400 athletic teams at colleges and universities in 45 states.

The children become honorary members of the team, participating in almost all team activities.

For its efforts, Team IMPACT will receive the Community Hero Award at this year’s The Globies Awards. The Community Hero Award is one of four Editor’s Choice Globies selected by the Globe sports department’s leadership team.

What started in a small way in New Hampshire now spans across the United States, with children matched with teams from Maine to Orange County, Calif, from Seattle, to Miami. In Massachusetts alone, 225 teams are participating.

The obvious idea is that this program benefits the children, but Team IMPACT believes the benefits are just as powerful for the members of the college teams.

The founders of Team IMPACT are Dan Kraft, Jay Calnan, Kris Herman, Tim Kelly, Mark Plansky, Robert Tishman, Scott Tully and Dan Walsh.

Those founders and all of their employees and volunteers will be honored at the 2016 Globies on Nov. 14 at the House of Blues in Boston.

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Thumbnail photo via The Boston Globe