Wednesday, July 27, 2011

UIS coaches, athletes and staff teach kids about sports and staying fit

University of Illinois Springfield Athletics
was proud to host more than 250 children from Springfield Public School’s Project SCOPE during a two-day sports and fitness event held at The Recreation and Athletic Center (TRAC) on July 26-27, 2011.

“It’s a little bit of a field trip for them to come out and interact with our coaches, our administrators and our student-athletes,” said Marne Fauser, UIS head women’s basketball coach and coordinator of the event.

This is the second year UIS Athletics has hosted the program, which is designed to show kids that sports and fitness can be fun.

“We believe in healthy kids and fit kids and we want them to be active and enjoy playing sports,” said Fauser.

The event featured 15 stations outside and in the TRAC gym focusing on basketball, soccer, volleyball and other fun games.

“It’s good to be active and start at a young age liking a sport,” said Abby Vorreyer, a junior UIS woman’s golfer and volunteer. “I’m happy to be part of it.”

Project SCOPE is the before and after school program in District 186, which during the summer transforms into an all-day camp. The students spend their summer learning and taking a variety of field trips. The goal of Project SCOPE is to provide care, which promotes social, emotional and physical development.

“They don’t get to do this every day,” said Cristina Nevins, a senior UIS women’s basketball player. “It’s really nice to show them something new.”

The partnership not only creates a supportive environment for the children, but also allows UIS coaches, student-athletes and staff to connect with the community.

“We are part of the community and I think it’s important we interact with the community and bring the community to us,” said Fauser. “They get a great opportunity (for the children) to work with our student-athletes and get an opportunity to be on our campus.”

UIS Athletics hopes to continue the partnership with Project SCOPE in future years in an effort to bring the children back to campus.

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