Athletics teach our student-athletes a myriad of life skills.
Teamwork. Responsibility. Perseverance. Selflessness. The list goes on and on.
Good coaches teach these things to their teams in games and practice. Better coaches take these lessons off the field or court and into the community.
We are blessed in this area with some very good coaches who regularly make community service part of their athletes’ experience. And in this season of giving, it’s incredibly inspiring to see local teams helping those in need.
A day after a tough road loss to Fort Wayne Snider and long bus ride home, head basketball coach Joe Nadaline and his Anderson Indians spent their Sunday afternoon making Christmas presents a joyful reality for needy children. The Tribe sorted toys, coats and gloves for Operation Love Ministries in Anderson, readying them for distribution to local families for the holidays. The team also added a donation of 34 new toys to those already collected by Operation Love.
“We know that by doing this, we’re helping someone else smile,” senior Kenya Wilkerson said.
Wilkerson’s comment should make us all smile. Learning to give back is an important part of growing up, and these first-hand experiences are helping our young people to develop into caring and giving adults.
The Indians basketball team isn’t the only one giving back. From Pendleton, Lapel, Frankton, Alexandria and Elwood to Liberty Christian, Anderson Prep, Daleville, Madison-Grant and Shenandoah, teams in all manner of sports across our coverage area are working for those hurting or in need with bake sales, fundraisers and service projects.
What an amazing example they set for us, for we all could stand to be a little more charitable in our everyday lives.
We as a community share in the responsibility of teaching these kids the value of service. So the next time a basketball player or wrestler or volleyball player asks for your help in making someone else smile, smile back and give what you can.
In summary Local athletic teams are setting a good example for all of us by giving back to the community.