Elmira College SAAB Assists Local Family For Holidays
Elmira, NY (12/14/2018) — The Elmira College Student-Athlete Advisory Board (SAAB) and the Department of Athletics expressed their holiday spirit by giving back to a local family in need, as part of Catholic Charities of Chemung and Schuyler Counties' Adopt-A-Family Program.
The EC SAAB, comprised of members from the College's 19 athletic teams and the sports medicine department, has made participation in Catholic Charities' Adopt-A-Family Program an annual holiday tradition. This year, donations were collected to support a single mother and her three children, who ranged in age from six to 15 years old, in hopes of making their Christmas a little merrier.
"I think it's important for our student-athletes to come together because it shows our entire school that we can be a part of something bigger than ourselves," said Nick Cottone '19, a senior on the Elmira baseball team and SAAB president. "A lot of us are fortunate enough to be able to go to college, get a good education and go home to enjoy the holidays with our families. The EC community coming together and donating funds towards another family's Christmas really speaks volumes about the unselfish nature and strong character instilled in our student-athletes."
According to Cottone, the Soaring Eagles raised enough funds to purchase nearly every item on the family's wish list, ranging from necessities to household goods, clothing, and toys for the children. Cottone, SAAB Vice President Joseph Amoddio '21 (men's basketball and men's volleyball), and fellow student-athletes Taylor Hanson '21 (women's soccer), Kelsie Aloi '21 (field hockey), Alyssa Waters '22 (women's basketball), Rachel Katzenberger '19 (women's volleyball and softball), and Irene Zimmerman '19 (women's cross country), as well as sports medicine student assistant Holly Landon '19, found time between finals preparation earlier this week to wrap the gifts, which were delivered to the Catholic Charities office in downtown Elmira by Cottone and teammate Corey DeMauro '20 on Friday morning.
"Adopting a family for Christmas is so important because a lot of our families don't qualify for certain assistance, so they're really struggling to make ends meet at Christmas time," said Katie Rhodes, Development and Marketing Coordinator for Catholic Charities. "Being able to have presents and toys for the kids, but most of all the hats, boots, gloves, and those sorts of things, is a huge blessing for them, and it's really important for the community to come together to help those in need."