LOGO

04 Feb 23 124 0 0

Lawton football players give back to help kids experiencing food insecurity

Cool Story - Lawton football players give back to help kids experiencing food insecurity

It just takes a few minutes to walk the length of downtown Lawton, and in that short amount of time, it's clear what makes the sleepy Van Buren County municipality special.

Every fall, practically every window along that three-block stretch is decorated with paintings and signs showing support for Lawton High School sports, showing the Blue Devil student-athletes that the community is behind them.

The Lawton football team took time out of its hectic schedule this week to assist local families who were experiencing food insecurity.

All 50 of the Blue Devils varsity football players gathered on Monday in the high school library to pack bags of food that will be given to elementary-, middle-, and high school-aged children in the district through a new initiative called Gracious Hearts, four days before the team is scheduled to play Jackson Lumen Christi in the regional finals.

A non-profit organization called Gracious Hearts was founded in March by Martha Lull to supply children in the Lawton area with food on days when there are no classes and no free or reduced meals are offered.

When the travel softball team of Lull's daughter participated in volunteer work for a comparable organization in Vicksburg, she was inspired to found the non-profit.

Lull stated, "I started thinking about implementing this in my community. We need to get this moving," I abruptly declared one day after giving it some thought.

Just over 30 bags of shelf-stable food were initially delivered to families in Lawton, but as Gracious Hearts received donations and grants to launch the project, the number of bags quickly grew to 120.

For Lull and her two fellow Gracious Hearts board members, Kim Triemstra and Juliann Bradish, packing that many bags takes hours, but with Lawton's well-oiled football team helping out, the food is packed into 120 bags in just a few minutes.

The football players from Lawton "really make me cry because they care," said Lull. They genuinely care about the children in their neighborhood that require assistance. I hope people realize what it means. I find it all to be tear-jerking. It holds a particular place in my heart.

Wade Walrup, the head coach, didn't think twice to solicit the assistance of his entire team when he learned the group required volunteers to be able to deliver the bags of food by Wednesday.

When you volunteer for someone you know and have a connection to, you might even be assisting your best friend's family, he explained.

The football squad has previously worked on tasks including cleaning out townhouses, light demolition work, and volunteering their time to the Lawton Lions Club.

Regarding his team's volunteer endeavors, Waldrup noted, "We strive to do it a lot." "During the summer, our calendar often fills up very quickly. Many people want us to lend a hand, and since they do greatly support us, we feel partly obligated to do so."'

Since almost everyone in this town is at the football game on Friday nights, this is the greatest time to go downtown and steal stuff. I believe that youngsters are aware of it, and they frequently have a connection to the person who is responsible for Lawton's good causes.

We just felt it was incredibly essential to give back after all the support they showed us while we were traveling the state last year and receiving donations from them.

In the past two weeks, Martha has moved the organization's pantry inside Lawton High School, freeing up some space and making it simpler for volunteers to lend a hand. Previously, Gracious Hearts mostly operated out of the Lull family's home, where the family would store and bag upwards of $600 worth of food each week.

The originator of the group has put in a lot of labor, including weekly grocery shopping, bagging, and delivery, but it has been satisfying employment.

"I was one of those kids growing up, so I just have a lot of empathy for these kids, and I know what they're going through, and it's difficult, especially right now in these times," Martha said. "Just knowing that I am helping kiddos make sure they have food for the weekend." It's extremely difficult on parents, no matter what they're dealing with.

Even while the number of children receiving a Gracious Hearts food bag has nearly quadrupled since it began, Martha said recent food and monetary donations have slowed, and the charity needs ongoing help to keep providing weekend meals to children in the area.

Visit the Gracious Hearts website by clicking here for additional details on how to donate, volunteer, or organize a food drive to benefit the organization.

The above article is selected by CoolDeeds.org. The information and the assets belong to their respective owners (original link).


Get inspired by these stories and start your own cool deeds. Let’s fill every neighborhood with good and cool activities. Start your first GroupUp activity or event, invite others, register participants & share your cool deeds so others can follow. Use CoolDeeds.com absolutely free tools to start your initiative. All for FREE, click here to start now.

Step 1: CREATE THE EVENT/ACTIVITY:

Get inspiration and pick a date and create an "Event / Group Up" at www.cooldeeds.com. It is absolutely FREE. There are so many ideas on www.CoolDeeds.com, let's take one and go with it or come up with your own ideas and start something good and cool in your neighborhood. Click here to get started.

Step 2: ANNOUNCE & INVITE:

Share it on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts to announce. Send an invite to your friends, neighbors and family to join the "Event / Group Up".

Step 3: PERFORM EVENT & FEEL GOOD:

Perform the event, take images, videos, and share on www.CoolDeeds.com to inspire the world so others can do the same in their community and neighborhood.

You did it.......Even if you did this alone, you should be proud of yourself as we surely are. Let's start creating an "Event / Group Up" today. Please note CoolDeeds.com is absolutely FREE for all the above activities. Our only purpose is to spread good and cool activities everywhere.

Hunger
Pactiv Evergreen, Salvation Army of Canandaigua team up to help hungry

The company on North Street in the city contacted the Salvation Army of Canandaigua for assistance after learning that almost two dozen Pactiv Evergre...

0

58

0

Hunger
Former Buncombe teacher honored for Madison feeding program

Elizabeth Hamrick has been giving food to people in Madison County for more than 12 years, but she never anticipated getting praise for her good deeds...

0

56

0

Hunger
Donations to food banks keep children from going hungry

Important initiatives for local children and families are made possible by the foundation and corporate support of All Faiths Food Bank as students re...

0

59

0

Hunger
Overwhelmed food charities say the solution to hunger is higher incomes, not more funding

A non-profit in Newfoundland and Labrador claims that declining funds and high demand are forcing the closure of its food helpline, but it is not seek...

0

69

0

Hunger
Give out more packages of food

  Friend-in-Deed volunteers give out more than 200 packages of food On Wednesday, Friend-in-Deed volunteers cheerfully gave more than 200 free ...

0

99

0

Hunger
Collecting treats for the troops, delivering food to the hungry

The Sarasota Campus of Everglades University recently gave over 232 pounds of candy, valued at $1,864, to Treats for Troops, an initiative spearheaded...

0

112

0

Hunger
Food Lion Feeds provides 500,000 meals as part of a global event

Food Lion Feeds is assisting in the provision of 500,000 meals to its longstanding hunger-relief partner Feeding America, the nation's largest domesti...

1

142

0

Hunger
Hunters play a major role in feeding Michigan's hungry

The Michigan Sportsmen Against Hunger has taken the idea of "feeding the hungry" to heart and has made a significant effort in this regard. In a conce...

0

129

0

Hunger
Reduce Wasted Food By Feeding Hungry People

The second stage of the EPA’s Food Recovery Hierarchy involves distributing food to feed people. According to the EPA, around 63 million tonnes ...

0

140

0

Hunger
Start a Community Garden Vegetable Donation Program

A man serving as a volunteer coordinator for Denver's Plant a Row for the Hungry initiative. Last year, local gardeners sent 16 different food pantrie...

0

168

0

Hunger
GoodPop Donates 1.5M Meals to Those in Need

Texas's Austin, The company GoodPop has served 1.5 million meals to those in need through its Pledge Good Foundation. 100,000 of the meals were given ...

0

167

0

Hunger
Houston Chef Used Food to Invest in His Community

Houston chef Chris Williams was determined to keep the lights on at Lucille's, his 10-year-old "well-refined Southern food" eatery in the Museum Distr...

0

155

0