Keuka Women's hoops to raise funds for needy children

Staff Writer
The Chronicle Express
Keuka Wolfpack women will raise funds for the Samaritan's Feet program at their Feb. 14 home game against the College of St. Elizabeth.

When the student-athletes on the Keuka College women’s basketball team go to practice or play in a game, they have a special basketball shoe on their feet designed to handle the rigors of running up and down a basketball court.

When the practice or game is finished, they remove their basketball shoes and don winter boots or sneakers for the trek back to their residence halls or apartments.

The student-athletes on the team have multiple pairs of sneakers at their disposal, yet their abundance of footwear serves in stark contrast to children living in impoverished countries across the world, many of whom don’t even have a single pair of shoes to protect their feet.

The Wolfpack women’s basketball team wants to do its part to change that.

Partnering with the national Samaritan’s Feet program, the women’s basketball team is raising money and awareness through the College’s first Samaritan Feet Game.

When the Wolfpack hosts North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) rival the College of St. Elizabeth for a 1 p.m. contest Saturday, Feb. 14, head coach Sarah Gaffney will coach barefooted on the sidelines, hoping to spread the word on this worthy charity that aims to provide shoes to children in need.

Additionally, there will be a 50/50 raffle, a Valentine’s Day raffle with prizes from local businesses, and concessions will be sold, with all proceeds going to Samaritan’s Feet (www.samaritansfeet.org).

There will also be a youth basketball game at halftime.

“This year, I’ve been challenging our student-athletes to think of how they can give back to the community through community service. It’s about being more than just a student on campus. Their basketball careers are important, but coming to Keuka is all about being a good person and a good citizen. With this event, we can help provide shoes to children in need,” said Gaffney

For every $1,000 donated to Samaritans Feet, 100 brand-new shoes are donated to children in these developing and low-income countries.

The chance to give back to those less fortunate really resonated with junior Mackenzie Cole (Ogdensburg./Ogdensburg Free Academy).

“While we are student-athletes on the basketball team, we’re about more than just playing basketball and going to class. We want people in the community to know that we’re here to make this a better place,” Cole said.

“We want to get as much support for this event as possible. We’re trying to raise money and awareness for this great cause, and we all just want to give back to those less fortunate. We take it for granted we’re going to have shoes on our feet, yet in some parts of the world, children can get diseases or even die from not having sneakers. This is a great cause for us to join.”