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Hillcat Athletics Volunteer in the Community

Ariani Silva with a member of the Catoosa Special Olympics (photo courtesy of Catoosa High School).Ariani Silva with a member of the Catoosa Special Olympics (photo courtesy of Catoosa High School).

CLAREMORE, Okla. – The Rogers State athletic teams are involved in numerous charity and community organizations throughout Claremore and the surrounding communities. During the Fall 2012 semester Hillcat athletic teams spent over 900 hours working with community organizations.

Teams worked with organizations like TOPSoccer, Safenet, Rogers County Youth Services, Claremore Sequoyah Elementary, First Baptist Church Recovery Program, Westside Elementary, Catoosa Special Olympics and the Claremore Community Center’s Blast program.

TOPSoccer, a community-based training and team placement program for young athletes with disabilities brings the opportunity of learning and playing soccer to any boy or girl who has a mental or physical disability. The Rogers State men’s and women’s soccer programs assisted the local TOPSoccer program every Saturday for two hours from September through November. The Hillcat soccer teams hosted the TOPSoccer athletes for a home soccer contest versus John Brown University on October 19. The TOPSoccer athletes walked out with the Hillcat players during introductions and played a small sided game against the men’s soccer team during the women’s halftime. Post-game, the Hillcats signed autographs and took pictures with the TOPSoccer athletes. The Hillcat soccer teams combined for 360 hours of service.

The RSU men’s and women’s cross country teams assisted Safenet and Rogers County Youth Services (RCYS) during the 2012 fall semester. The Hillcats helped Safenet, a women’s abuse shelter in Claremore, move locations by moving boxes, furniture and canned foods. Hillcat cross country student-athletes spent time at RCYS playing games, mentoring and spending time with at-risk youth. Hillcat cross country teams worked a combined 53 hours between Safenet and RCYS.

Hillcat baseball worked with Claremore Sequoyah Elementary in the “Rise and Shine” assembly and with music classes. Baseball players read books and played games with Claremore Sequoyah students in a music class. Working a total of 94 hours at Claremore Sequoyah Elementary, the Hillcat Baseball team has developed a relationship with students through its involvement in the “Rise and Shine” assembly and music classes.

Working in conjunction with the First Baptist Church – Claremore’s Recovery Program the Softball Cats have assisted in preparation and clean-up of dinner activities. Along with its time spent working with the Recovery Program the Hillcat Softball team has also spent time every Thursday afternoon in the fall assisting with community day at Claremore’s Westside Elementary. The Hillcats would tutor, read, play games or do arts and crafts with students. RSU softball spent 120 hours between its service at First Baptist Church and Westside Elementary.

Hillcat Men’s Basketball spent quality time at Westside Elementary mentoring and talking with students about school and life. The Hillcat student-athletes spent one-on-one time with students at Westside. RSU men’s basketball spent 80 hours of service at Westside Elementary.

RSU Women’s Basketball continued its partnership with Catoosa Special Olympics with each Hillcat having a “buddy” or “buddies” on the Catoosa Special Olympics team. The Hillcats helped run a practice in September at Catoosa High School and in October assisted in running the regional basketball competition at Catoosa. During the regional competition RSU players worked as referees, clock operators and when not working cheered on their Catoosa buddies with handmade posters the women made. On November 29, RSU hosted the Catoosa team at a home basketball versus Hillsdale Free Will Baptist College. The Catoosa players made posters for their buddies, showcased their skills during halftime and post-game had an autograph and picture session. Over the course of the semester the Hillcats spent 140 hours while building a partnership with the Catoosa Special Olympics.

The Hillcat men’s and women’s golf teams spent 96 hours of service at the “Blast” program at the Claremore Community Center. Nearly 20 at-risk children come every day after school from 4 to 6 p.m. RSU golfers spent time playing for an hour and helping with school work for an hour at least once a week.

The Rogers State Athletics Department is committed to providing volunteer opportunities for student athletes to connect with people in the community. The teams will continue their work in the community throughout the spring semester.

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