Posted: Monday, October 14, 2013 2:42 pm
Next Saturday, October 26 is a rare off day for all but one of the Glasgow High School fall sports teams. But instead of sleeping in, hanging out with family and friends, or heading to part-time jobs, the majority of the school’s athletes and coaches are participating in the school’s inaugural Glasgow Care Walk before they head to Delcastle to watch the Dragons face the Cougars on the gridiron.
The walk begins at 10 a.m. in the stadium. As of this week, there are nearly 100 students registered and the general public can sign up during school hours at the school or starting at 9:30 a.m. the morning of the event. Of the $10 registration fee, $7 is being donated to the local Red Cross and $3 goes toward the school’s athletic department.
“At the end of last year, we decided that we wanted our athletes and school in general to be more involved in the community,” athletic director Jeremy Jeanne explained. “We want our student-athletes to understand that being an athlete is a privilege and because we want our athletes to understand that privilege, we want them to understand the importance of giving back. Our kids are very excited about this event.”
A simple idea that started out as one relatively small walking event involving only student-athletes has since expanded to include any interested member of the student body, their family and friends, and the general public. The overwhelming positive response was one reason Jeanne decided to expand the Glasgow Care concept beyond the athletic department.
“The original goal of the Glasgow Care campaign was for Glasgow High School student-athletes to give back to their community,” Jeanne said. “I remember the first time I met our new principal, Mr. Ivory, and shared this new initiative. He right away fell in love with the idea. Thanks to his support, we have expanded this new initiative to not just our student-athletes, but to the entire school. We are using ‘Glasgow Care’ to offer our students community services hours that are applied toward the 60 hours required for graduation.”
A dozen or so students participating in Saturday’s morning walk are doing double-duty, spending the afternoon at the Veterans Hospital in Elsmere to visit with the veterans and make blankets for them.
“I was very excited about volunteering for this because I believe it’s an honor to be able to meet some of the veterans who had a hand in keeping liberty in America,” junior tennis player Jackie Cornejo said. “I’m looking forward to hearing about how life changes after being part of something as big as serving the country.”
Saturday’s community outreach is just another example of a year-long effort by the Glasgow athletes to give back to the community. Other initiatives include visiting different elementary schools in the district to read and donate books during the winter months, and hosting an egg hunt in the spring for kids with disabilities or who are in a shelter.
“Our mission as educators is to produce responsible and productive citizens that give back to their communities,” Glasgow principal Dean Ivory said. “I am so proud of our student-athletes for leading by example.”
That example has now expanded beyond just the athletic department, and although that was not the original intent, Jeanne couldn’t be happier that it is the end result.
“Glasgow students truly care about the community,” Jeanne beamed. “I just love it!”