The Gift of Giving
Been a minute since I put a pen to a pad or thumb to a notepad, but anyway I needed to come here. A Facebook status wasn’t enough or a live video where I could get easily distracted. I’ll start from the beginning. I’ve been a janitor at McNair School of Excellence for 7 years now, basketball coach for 6. When I started coaching basketball I used to always yell at kids for practicing in their school uniforms. Then I realized these kids don’t have “extra” gym clothes. There are not several pairs of basketball shorts at home, there are not any “play shoes.” So for the first couple of years I gave kids my shoes who could fit them and needed them. I purchased shorts and bags for kids who were in need. This got expensive so I came up with a plan. If I could get 20 of my friends to donate $50 I could purchase shoes and shorts for the boys. This plan worked out perfectly! I raised a little of $1000 and was able to get the boys gear. This small gesture which seemed minor to me touched the hearts of many and eventually landed me a spot on WGN! (http://wgntv.com/2016/01/27/teacher-buys-new-shoes-for-basketball-team/) I used the same model again in 2016.
With the program running so good I came up with another great idea for 2017! I was starting a mentoring/tutoring program at my school, “Dear Austin” but was thinking about expanding the program to other schools in the Austin area. If I could raise money so easy for my school why not do it for 5 schools?! So I came up with “100 people, 50 dollars, 5 schools.” I came up short, I raised just under $3000 but I took care of three schools! My school, Howe School of Excellence, and Ella Flagg Young.
Considered rival schools in our area I still wanted to spread love, because I feel this shoe drive is something small apart of a bigger plan to bring the community together. If we can have 50 young men come together imagine the possibilities. People always tell me I dream too big, but I don’t think this is hard. I think I should be aiming for 10 schools next year!! Thanks for listening to me I know you heard my voice while reading!
With the utmost pride and sincerity,
P.S. if you would like to donate please feel free to click the link below to make a small donation. If you would rather help out than give monetary gifts that is welcomed as well. Thanks in advance.