Tigers Give Back at St. Vincent de Paul Center
BATON ROUGE — Members of several LSU athletics teams adopted the downtown St. Vincent de Paul Center on Monday as part of the Shaquille O’Neal CHAMPS/Life Skills program.
A total of 34 student-athletes participated in the event, which included members of the softball, volleyball, gymnastics, track and field, women’s tennis, soccer and swimming and diving teams. The Tigers volunteered in shifts from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. to help in various activities at the shelter.
Among the projects that the student-athletes completed included feeding lunch to the homeless, packing brown bag suppers to hand out to those in need, painting the pharmacy, helping with yard work around the center and re-striping the parking lot.
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is an international, non-profit, charitable organization that has a rich history of service to the needy. Its mission, through person-to-person contact, mass feeding, sheltering and other channels, encompasses every form of aid which alleviates suffering and promotes dignity and integrity. All races, creeds, colors, origins, castes, opinions and genders are served.
The CHAMPS (Challenging Athletes Minds for Personal Success)/Life Skills Program was designed by the NCAA to help student-athletes realize higher academic achievement, increase likelihood of graduation and enter a chosen profession with a higher level of vision, knowledge, motivation, self-responsibility and greater overall success. In Spring 2003, the CHAMPS/ Life Skills Program honored one of LSU’s most memorable graduates, Shaquille O’Neal, by naming the program after him.