By Kelly Saathoff, Domestic Abuse Advocate for Fayette County | 

Upper Iowa University recently hosted an event welcoming back the student-athletes to campus. During this event, the Assistant Athletic Director, Danielle Mullen, worked with the student-athletes to put together 100 backpacks for children served at the Domestic Abuse Resource Center. We were honored Danielle approached Helping Services with this idea. Her passion for helping others showed during this amazing activity.

During the event, the student-athletes broke up into groups of 50: one group wrote inspirational notes; one group inserted pencils, erasers, and a sharpener into a pencil case; one group made jump ropes; and one group inserted folders. The student-athletes worked together on completing this project in less than 5 minutes!  It was such a humbling experience to see so many student-athletes work as a team in putting these backpacks together.

Nikki Kuhn, Volunteer Coordinator, and I were there to receive the backpacks on behalf of the children served at Helping Services. Each backpack was given to a child in hope to inspire them to “stay in school” and “to not give up on their dreams.” Thank you to Upper Iowa University for its commitment to children and families in our community!

Photo: Upper Iowa University student-athletes having fun while giving back to their community.

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