FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MANCHESTER, N.H. – The Southern New Hampshire Men's and Women's Soccer teams came together recently at SNHU's Sandbox ColLABorative, along with the New England Revolution's Kelyn Rowe, to stuff 250 JoyJars that were delivered to children and families fighting cancer at Massachusetts General Hospital on Thursday.
JoyJars are plastic jars filled with toys and activities, inspired by Jessie Rees, a 12-year old cancer patient, who wanted to send hope, joy and love to her peers battling cancer. Rees filled more than 3,000 JoyJars during her fight in 2011, with her memory and cause being carried on today by the Jessie Rees Foundation.
"It has such an impact to hear about Jessie's story and then to see actual video footage of how happy kids are when they receive a JoyJar," said women's soccer co-captain Paige Salmon "To have that powerful impact – maybe not going to the hospital and handing a jar to them, but knowing that I was able to put a smile on a kid's face in such a dark time – really speaks volumes."
Rowe became involved with the Jessie Rees Foundation through UCLA classmate Cory Tomlinson, who serves as the foundation's Sports Engagement Manager. Rowe is now what the foundation refers to as a NEGU (Never Ever Give Up) All-Star, going into hospitals all over the country and providing unforgettable moments for children.
"I get to show these student-athletes that there is an opportunity to be involved in something greater than just soccer or than just school," said Rowe, who is currently pursuing his BA in Communication through the College of Online and Continuing Education (COCE) at SNHU. "These kids are fighting cancer and so even when you're going through finals, when you're going through a tough game and it's the 90th minute of the game – there's something better out there, something greater in the world – everything is going to be OK and the world is not going to end. So what can you do to give back?
The Jessie Rees Foundation, whose mission is to ensure every kid fighting cancer has the support to Never Ever Give Up, has seen over 100,000 JoyJars stuffed and sent to kids worldwide. Learn more at negu.org.
This feature is part of the NE10's Embrace the Impact week which runs from Monday, December 18 through Friday, December 22. One of the tenents of the NE10's recently-introduced branding campaign is 'Our Character Remains Undefeated'. The headline speaks directly to the league's commitment to community-service efforts, and how it is a hallmark of the league and what it stands for: that the NE10's student-athletes exhibit great character; they conduct themselves with integrity on and off the field of play through hard work.
Schedule of Embrace the Impact Releases:
Monday - Southern New Hampshire 'Joy Jars'
Tuesday - Adelphi Women's Basketball Adds Bianca to it's Roster through Team IMPACT
Wednesday - Franklin Pierce Joins Forces with Special Olympics
Thursday - Saint Rose SAAC 'Adopts a Family'
Friday - Saint Michael's Holiday Letters through A Million Thanks
Information, photos, and video content for this release provided by the athletic communications staff at Southern New Hampshire
ABOUT THE NE10
The NE10 is an association of 15 diverse institutions serving student-athletes across 24 NCAA Division II sports. Together we build brilliant futures by embracing the journey of every student-athlete.
Each year, 4,500 of those student-athletes compete in conference championships in 24 sports, making the NE10 the largest DII conference in the country in terms of sport sponsorship. Leading the way in the classroom, on the field and within the community, the NE10 is proud of its comprehensive program and the experience it provides student-athletes.