Student-Athletes Take on a Special Holiday Project

Prior to the Thanksgiving holiday, members of the Nyack College men’s basketball team:  Carl Balthazar, Elijah Farley, Junior Graham, Rashard Lewis, Tahj Malone, Jah-Meer McDuffie, Deandre Osuigwe, Malik Pouncy, Imran Ritchie, Ezekiel Snowden, Curtis Thompson, Calvin Willis and Shawn Witherspoon along with Assistant Coach Stephen Howard, gathered at Living Christ Church in downtown Nyack for a special community service project. Nyack’s Manager of Special Events in the Office of College Relations, Mrs. Nancy Gates, arranged for the team to make stuffing for an annual meal at Living Christ that would feed homeless and low-income families at their Fifth Annual Thanksgiving Day Dinner.

“It was a pleasure to give back to the community. I didn’t realize that you can help so many people by chipping in together as a team to help prepare dinner for Thanksgiving,” commented senior Imran Ritchie from Uniondale, NY. Accustomed to the importance of team effort, Shawn Witherspoon, a junior from Philadelphia, PA observed, “It was great for the team to strengthen our relationship by bonding off the court while also making someone else's Thanksgiving better by helping to prepare the food.”

At this time of year, celebrating the holidays with family and friends can be a blessing easily taken for granted; but the importance of community was not overlooked by senior Rashard Lewis from Chesterfield, VA, who remarked, “We had a chance to take a step back and not think about ourselves. We prepared food for many people in need on a special holiday like Thanksgiving. That church is doing something great for the community by giving people a place to go and to enjoy a family atmosphere!”