For John Jay Youth Football, volunteering is part of playbook
A new season is underway for the John Jay Youth Football (JJYF) league but before the uniforms are even issued the eighth grade team was asked to take their camaraderie off the field and share it with the children at Blythedale Children’s Hospital. “We wanted to show the boys how easy and important it is to volunteer their time to those who are less fortunate,” explains Nick Giardina, president of John Jay Youth Football. “We knew most of the boys had never volunteered in this capacity before, however, we had no idea it was going to be such a positive experience for everyone.” As a result, the league has decided to make this an annual volunteer program.
Each Friday from July 26 through August 16, a group of JJYF eighth grade players met at Blythedale Children’s Hospital in the recreation room to handout John Jay youth football t-shirts and play games. The kids at Blythedale really enjoyed playing video games, board games, coloring and especially playing card games. To help support the Blythedale Children's Hospital, JJYF donated $300 to the recreation department for games and supplies.
It was evident to the JJYF boys that the children of Blythedale were just like them only not as fortunate. “It touched me, and every parent that went to see our JJ boys approach an unfamiliar situation and be able to feed off of each other like teammates would, but on a different field with a different outcome,” expressed Giardina. “Taking part in this volunteer program is the perfect way for the eighth grade team to kick off their last football season with JJYF and I couldn't be more proud of them."