KU Student-Athletes Help With 'Adopt-a-Family'

Dec. 19, 2005


The Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) helped organize the annual “Adopt-a-Family” for the holidays project this week, purchasing gifts for local families.

SAAC representatives collected money from their teammates and went shopping for the gifts on the families’ wish lists. SAAC works with the East Central Kansas Economic Opportunity Corporation (ECKAN), a community action agency that serves low-income persons in the Douglas County area. For the “Adopt-a-Family” project, ECKAN arranged the cooperative effort of six agencies, which includes the Pélathé Community Resource Center, the Salvation Army, the Ballard Center, Douglas County Senior Services and Penn House.

“The student-athletes are an excellent group to work with and have always made the extra effort to get exactly what the families want,” said Jeanette Collier, Coordinator at the Douglas County ECKAN office. “We are thankful for their effort and love the Jayhawks!”

SAAC is a committee comprised of student-athlete representatives from the 16 KU Athletics teams. The purpose of the SAAC is to provide student-athletes the opportunity to communicate more effectively with Kansas Athletics administration, coaches and staff. It enables student-athletes to provide recommendations for the improvement of academic, athletic and social experiences. The committee encourages unity, common purpose and camaraderie between teams and among all student-athletes. It also encourages community involvement through service projects and fundraisers.

Matt Baty, a senior SAAC representative on the baseball team, enjoys the opportunity to help local families celebrate the holidays.

“When we get the shopping lists, we get excited thinking about the looks on the kids’ faces when they receive the gifts they asked for,” Baty said. “We are thankful to play a role in providing a happy holiday season for local families.”