Volleyball Team in the Community|
Feb. 18, 2012
Like so many student-athletes at Texas Tech and around the nation, the off-season generally means an increased presence within the community. And, perhaps this year above others, that is particularly true for the Red Raiders Volleyball team.
Head Coach Don Flora has a deep commitment to the Lubbock community and wants to be certain that his team shares in as many opportunities as possible to contribute to local causes.
In concert with the Athletics Department's Director of Student-Athlete Affairs, Justin Paysinger, the Red Raiders spent several hours on Thursday afternoon helping the Lubbock Homes for Heroes group build a house for the 2012 recipient of a new home, Louis Flores. The team helped kick off the actual build portion of the effort as the program was announced during the Wounded Warrior Project football game on November 13, 2011. In future weeks members of other teams and staff from the Athletics department will continue to contribute to the cause by picking up tools as the home is constructed. The home will be unveiled during the annual Parade of Homes in June.
Then, on Saturday, February 18, members of the team joined Director of Volleyball Operations Amy Gandy in flipping pancakes at the annual Pancake Breakfast sponsored by the Lions Club of Lubbock at the Civic Center. The Red Raiders, who have also spent numerous hours at High Point Village throughout this academic year, will continue efforts such as these throughout the spring when practice time is limited.
"Our student-athletes do so much more than just compete," Paysinger said. "Teams typically spend between 1,000 to 1,400 hours working in the community at events just like these," he continued. "This year we've had unprecedented support because of people just like Coach Flora."
During the winter, Athletics staff joined forces with each sport within the department to ring bells for the Salvation Army throughout the community. Programs which benefit hospitals, the continued effort to raise funds and awareness for breast cancer research, the annual Talent Show benefitting the Special Olympics of Texas and the ongoing relationship the department has with High Point Village are just a few of the causes highlighted during any academic year.
And, with coaches like Flora at the helm of each program and under the leadership of Athletics Director Kirby Hocutt, those efforts are likely to be more visible to members of the community in the coming years.