Donated Sports Equipment Inspires and Motivates Young Lives

Maureen Sawyer donated 18 boxes of sports equipment, clothes, and toys to FFP.


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COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Aug. 2, 2012) — The love of sports is as old as the Olympic Games, which are believed to have started in ancient Greece in 776 B.C.  Centuries later, dozens of nations still look forward to seeing their top athletes compete in selected venues of the world and the chance to bring home a bronze, silver or gold medal.

Maureen Sawyer, 14, may not be an Olympic champion, but she does have a heart of gold when it comes to giving back. A devoted Girl Scout for nearly a decade, and a determined soccer player, Sawyer is making the lives of hundreds of children in the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, Guatemala and Honduras a lot more enjoyable, thanks to her donation of sports equipment.

“It is an amazing feeling to know that I have made a difference in the lives of those I’ve never even met,” said Sawyer. “I have seen photos of children in Haiti playing with balls and toys made from trash. Now, having actual toys and sports equipment, these kids can play more easily, safely and joyfully!”

Sawyer learned about Food For The Poor from Father Richard Martin, pastor of the Church of the Nativity in Burke, Va. For 14 years, Fr. Martin and his congregation have worked side by side with Food For The Poor to help transform the lives of hundreds of families by building seven villages in Haiti.

With the support of her family, Sawyer started collecting her treasure trove of balls, bats, mitts, and more in mid-April.  She asked friends to bring sports equipment to her birthday party in place of presents. She received donations from her teachers, neighbors, and the athletic departments at Lake Braddock Secondary School. She set up collection bins at White Oaks Elementary School, Burke Sporting Goods and purchased items from Dani Dubs Consignment Sale.  Eight weeks later, 18 large boxes packed to the brim were shipped to the Caribbean and Latin America via Food For The Poor.

“Maureen’s generous donation of sporting equipment is greatly appreciated. Many of the children in the countries we serve see sports such as baseball, basketball or soccer as a means of hope, as a way to escape the poverty that surrounds them,” said Angel Aloma, Executive Director of Food For The Poor. “With this donation, they know someone out there cares enough about them to give them the opportunity to dream, and that’s what being a child is about.”

Food For The Poor, named by The Chronicle of Philanthropy as the largest international relief and development organization in the nation, does much more than feed millions of the hungry poor in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicines, educational materials, homes, support for orphans and the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance, with more than 96 percent of all donations going directly to programs that help the poor.

Contact:
Wanda Wright
Food For The Poor
Public Relations
954-427-2222 x 6079
wandaw@foodforthepoor.com