Members of the Erma Siegel Elementary School gather Nov. 21, 2013, after donating food for charity in Murfreesboro, Tenn. (Photo submitted)
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- The Erma Siegel Elementary School basketball team recently spent the afternoon packing food for local families.
The Lady Eagles measured and packed rice and beans for Feed America First’s “Tons of Love” program a week before at the Murfreesboro Street location. Feed America First is a hunger relief organization that provides food to about 200 agencies in Middle Tennessee. Bulk food comes in from suppliers and donors, and is sorted for distribution.
These teammates, while getting a first-hand view of the growing need for food relief, are also learning ways to help be part of the solution.
“Basketball is a lot of problem solving. You are constantly making adjustments and finding ways around obstacles,” said Siegel coach Josh Markham. “The hunger issues and food insecurities that so many deal with are obstacles to growth and development. Our girls are learning ways to help others get around those.
“Success as a team is more than on the court. It is how they conduct themselves in the classroom, at home, with their friends and how they contribute to the community. These girls are doing a great job of all of those and are successful on the court and off.”
The Lady finished tied for first at 7-1 in the City Schools girl’s league this season. Their is a 180 degree turnaround from last year’s 1-7record. Much of their success is attributed to hard work ethic, great attitudes and offseason work. Several of the starters played on a local AAU team the Murfreesboro Lady Stars that placed second in the nation at the YBOA Nationals in Kissimmee, Fla.
“The same recipe for success on the court applies to success off the court” Markham said. “Hard work, a great attitude and long-term commitment will go a long way. Hopefully this is what the girls will take away from this season.The wins are great, but the life lessons last longer.”
One in six children in Middle Tennessee deal with food insecurity, not knowing where their next meal will come from or if they will have one. In 2011 alone, Feed America First distributed more than 5 million pounds of food. For more information check out their website www.feedamericafirst.com