Every 2015 October Acts of Kindness submission was heart-warming and wonderful. Here are a few of the most touching stories.
Maine USA Gymnastics State Director, Carol Hamilton-Brewer, nominated Maine-ly Gymnastics, for stepping up time and time again for their community. They are amazing at fundraisers for friends and family in need, and the entire proceeds of a fundraiser for the rebuild of the gym’s failing roof were given instead to the family of a gym dad killed in a car accident.
“Both Delani and Alexis truly live by doing Kount on Kindness and teaching the gymnasts in their gym about doing the same. They feel that you get what you give, so giving back to others and being kind are things that every child needs to learn. I know this [nomination] wouldn’t get them a roof, but it would make them realize that what they truly do for others matters so much more!” – Carol
Update: The owner of Maine construction company Kavestone LLC – and mother to two gymnasts at the YMCA – read Maine-ly’s story on the Kount on Kindness facebook page. Kavestone has offered to donate the labor to do a proper repair of the roof! Yet another example of how the gymnastics community truly is the kindest of them all.
Olympia Gymnastics in Moncks Corner, SC, began a nursing home ministry in the summer of 2014. During the summer school breaks of 2014 and 2015 all of the children in the summer program visited one of several different facilities each week. Some of the facilities visited were White Oak Manor, Aging Gracefully, Heartland Health, and Unihealth. When visiting the facilities the children interacted with the residents in many different ways. In addition to having lighthearted conversation, they play games (checkers is a favorite!), help with puzzles, play the piano, and sing.
With school back in session, 25 to 30 children visit Unihealth each week from Olympia Gymnastics to continue the fellowship and friendships created through this community outreach.
Emerald City Gymnastics Academy
The athletes of Emerald City Gymnastics Academy choose a non-profit organization every year to focus their fundraising efforts.
The past two seasons they have been proud supporters of The Austen Everett Foundation. They “adopted” a local level 10 gymnast, Marlene Cervantes, who was battling cancer. While the kids don’t let a chemo treatment or hospital stay go by without cards and gifts, they also proudly raised over $25,000.00 for AEF over two years. That doesn’t include the $10,000.00 they raised for Marlene herself.
Emerald City Gymnastics Academy dedicated their 2015-2016 season to Marlene once again along with Nya Faith Jaquez who they raised funds for 2 years ago, as these young ladies are not done fighting.
“With over 100 JO athletes, our kids train hard and put everything into the life of a gymnast. At ECGA, that includes realizing what is in our community and relating to what goes on in the world. Cancer sucks. And you can Kount on the Kindness from Emerald City Gymnastics as we understand the simple fact that together we make a difference!”
Foothills Gymnastics & Cheer Center
You can always Kount on the Foothills Gymnastics and Cheer Center of Easley, South Carolina for Kindness.
When opening Foothills Gymnastics and Cheer Center, Foothills Gymnastics made it their mission to contribute to the community by reaching out to the Special Education community. Owner, Kim Patterson and sister Penny Crocker are both Special Education majors from Clemson University. Penny Crocker has dedicated her last 20 years to the Special Olympic program at Foothills and has no plans of slowing down. Penny was selected as the South Carolina Special Olympic Coach of the Year in 2014. Two of their Special Olympic athletes represented SC at the 2014 Special Olympics USA National Games competition in New Jersey where over 3,500 athletes competed in 14 different sporting events. Currently, Foothills has over 40 Special Olympic athletes who participate in gymnastics and over 20 gym buddies who volunteer their time each and every week.
Above and beyond the contributions of the Special Olympic program, Foothills also does a yearly fundraiser for a charity of their choice. Annually, Foothills provides a scholarship for a years worth of gymnastics to a deserving child in our community. They have worked with the South Carolina Flood Relief efforts to provide assistance to flooding victims. Other charitable donations have been given to local schools, daycares, Mary’s House (a home for women and children of domestic violence), Pickens County Prevention of Child Abuse just to name a few, and Foothills has provided meals and toys for local children and families in need at Christmas time.