There are a lot of kids to help in our community. And it takes partnership among many organizations to really make a positive impact on kids’ lives.

Recently, Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Tampa Bay invited me, as a representative of Fit4Truth, to warm up their “Bigs” and “Littles”

before the Mike Alstott Family Foundation Sports Buddies Day.  Sports Buddies Day was designed to recruit more male volunteers into Big Brothers and Big Sisters program, where they mentor youth through matching a child with an adult.

The day featured a variety of activities, including NFL Play 60 Football drills, cheerleading instruction, a football toss, mobile arcade and entertainment. I was asked to warm up the participants before the football drills to prevent injuries and educate youth on how to properly prepare themselves for physical activities. A good friend of mine, Joe Osborne, who owns Southeast Elite Strength and Conditioning, helped me during the pre-warm ups.Fit4Truth_Mike.Alstott

Before the football drills, we instructed over thirty teenagers how to stretch properly, perform push-ups and sit-ups and conduct ladder drills to improve footwork and coordination. The kids did a great job and were motivated to learn the various techniques, and we really stressed the value of staying active. While this was occurring, the “Bigs” sat back and watched their “littles” perform each instructed routine with a smile.

It was very rewarding to see mentorship in action. The “Bigs” were supporting their “littles” as if they were their own parent. The smiles and positive reinforcement from the “Bigs” to the “littles” made me very grateful and reinforced why I decided to help out. It reminded me that there are tons of selfless individuals in this world that take time out of their lives to help others. I was reminded that being a positive role model for children has a generational impact that cannot be measured from a single event, because small acts of kindness undulates into all aspects of a person’s life.

We had an amazing time getting to know everyone. I was able to meet Mike and his wife Nicole for the first time; both were very welcoming and grateful for our participation. They also provide services during Christmas and before each school year for the same kids we work with. I had no idea the Alstott’s provide services to the same group of kids as Fit4Truth, and this commonality underpins the power and value of selfless service. Like-minded people and organizations tend to attract the same values and principles that guide their efforts, as was evident on this day. We are excited to have already been asked to join in next year’s event.

Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Tampa Bay is a great organization that we have partnered with on previous Fit4Truth events. With a shared focus to mentor at-risk youth, we look forward to future collaboration.

We continually strive to form partnerships and offer services outside of healing and teaching foster children life skills. Everyone in our organization understands the value of not only accomplishing our mission of empowering and educating foster children and neglected youth, but we also strive to aid other youth organizations.

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