UNLV Student-Athletes Make Santa Clothes Program Another Success
Dec. 14, 2007
The Office of Student-Athlete Academic Services (SAAS) in University College joined the Rotary Club of Las Vegas for the 12th Annual Santa Clothes Program. This year was the biggest ever, with over 40 student-athletes from more than 10 teams participating in the event that benefited 292 children. The teams included Men's Soccer, Women's Soccer, Cheerleading, Softball, Volleyball, Women's Golf, Track and Field, Football, Women's Basketball and Men's Basketball. The Rotary Club members and other volunteers took groups of underprivileged children from the Las Vegas area to various J.C. Penney locations in the valley to shop for winter clothes that they need.
After the shopping spree, the children came to UNLV's Rebel Park outside of the Lied Athletic Complex. They were greeted by student-athlete volunteers, as well as SAAS and Athletic Department staff. The students volunteered during the last days of finals to impact the children's lives.
The student and staff volunteers ran various stations that children participated in throughout the morning. These included stretching, football, volleyball, soccer, softball, cheerleading, and a fun game of dodge ball with coaches and staff from the Women's Basketball program. Athletic Trainers also volunteered their time to provide water and first aid for the children outside.
After the fun on the field, the children enjoyed a pizza lunch in the Lied Auditorium and heard from two special guest speakers: Head Men's Basketball Coach Lon Kruger, and Wink Adams, a junior point guard. On their way out, the children received their choice of athletic balls for an early holiday gift. "I wanted to do it because I thought the kids would appreciate it," said Mario Jeberaeel, a senior University Studies major focusing on Education and Counseling. "I like doing stuff for them because if I do something positive then they know they can do positive things in life."
The Santa Clothes Program is part of Student-Athlete Academic Services' Life Skills Program. Community outreach programs will continue throughout Spring 2008, starting with Nevada Reading Week at the end of February.