It’s that time of year that keeps on giving. The kids and staff at the Kids’ Café in downtown Raleigh felt a little bit of that giving from the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday, Nov. 30. Jeff Skinner
and Justin Faulk
, along with some of the Community Relations staff, took a trip to one of the Kids’ Café locations to hang out with the kids, give homework tips and help serve dinner.
|Gabby Pinto |
The Kids’ Café is a branch of the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina that gives children a place to go after school to do homework, get a little physical activity and eat a healthy meal cooked on site. The Food Bank was one of the beneficiaries of our 2011 Food Drive, and Kids Café was a 2011 grant recipient of the Kids ‘N Community Foundation's fall grant cycle. A group from the Kids Café attended the game on Nov. 29 for our Kids ‘N Community Foundation night. We decided to keep the ball rolling and visit them on our November Canes’ Community Day!
The eagerness and warmth of the staff made us feel right at home. They prepared us for the excitement of the kids, many of who kept their tickets from the game the night before in hopes to get them signed by the visiting players.
As the kids walked in, they immediately flocked to the young players. They talked about hockey, sports in general and normal kid things, like school and what they like to do for fun. It was clear that the kids connected to the players and felt that they were able to ask them anything. A few kids even utilized Jeff's adding and subtracting expertise to help with their homework.
While the food was being prepared by the staff with help from a couple of the kids, Jeff and Justin sat at the tables with the rest of the group to sign “Let's Go Canes!” posters. Two of the girls wore their Eric’s Entourage t-shirts that they had received last year at a game they attended in Eric Staal
’s charity suite. It is a moment like this where you can see that the Hurricanes' impact in our community is not a one-time impression; the girls will always remember the Canes and the time we spent with them.
The day rolled along with lots of pictures, baby-holding, the serving and blessing of a delicious meal and even Jeff doing push-ups to show the kids different ways to stay active. We are thrilled to have been able to spend the day talking and hanging out with the kids.
During this holiday season, remember that giving is abundant, and you might be surprised at what you may receive in return. For us, it was the new friendships we made and lives we may have impacted that touched our hearts.
We would like to thank all of our Kids ‘N Community Foundation supporters for making our donation to the Kids’ Café possible. It is our supporters that make our impact possible!