OSWEGO – Several Oswego City School District athletic teams have embraced the district’s student-centered mission and expanded their reach to include neighbors in need.
Ahead of the holiday season, the Oswego High School indoor track team, wrestling team and the girls’ basketball program all have committed to their teams’ sense of unity as each group offered its own charitable giving opportunity.
During a recent Oswego State Men’s Ice Hockey game, members of the OHS indoor track team volunteered to help make the annual teddy bear toss an even greater success, as the high schoolers helped sell and then collect the stuffed animals after they were thrown on the ice once the Lakers’ scored their first goal.
A day later, OHS’s junior varsity and varsity girls’ basketball teams held a free throw contest.
Varsity coach Chris O’Brien said girls collected flat donations, as well as pledges, for the 100 total free throw shots each of them made.
While a portion of the proceeds will go toward the girls’ basketball program needs, a bulk of the funds will be used for the girls to shop together to help provide local families with gifts to make their holiday a little merrier.
“The more we get, the more families we can help,” said Joe Babcock, girls’ junior varsity basketball coach. “With the holiday season, we think of other people and that’s what we do as a team.”
People interested in helping the cause are welcomed to contact Babcock at 315-529-7613 prior to Dec. 16 when the girls and their coaches will gather to shop.
OCSD Athletic Director Rhonda Bullard said these moments of giving are just a few examples of pay-it-forward initiatives for Buccaneer athletics.
The athletes have been thrilled to give back to the community which has continuously supported them at both home and away games.
Bullard said the wrestling team will also volunteer at the local Salvation Army on Dec. 10 to help fill food boxes, which will be distributed to local families, so they may enjoy healthy meals around the holiday.