COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – “Name, image and likeness” has been a polarizing topic in college sports, but an Ohio State athlete is using her reach to ensure that a group of college students Central Ohio has the wherewithal to take the next step forward.
“It’s so nice to be able to talk to these little kids and give them hope and bring them back to the community,” beams Emma Goldean, a 5th grade senior on the IAAF field hockey team. State of Ohio.
As a college field hockey player, Goldean set many goals for himself on the field. But now she has an even bigger goal. “When I first heard about NIL coming out, I just waited a bit,” Goldean explains. “[ I ] I haven’t found anything good for me.
But after contacting Samaritan’s Feet, Goldean knew their mission was one she wanted to be a part of. “A non-profit organization where I can give back to the community? After so much has been given to me? Golden recalls his thought process.
On Monday morning, the Buckeye midfielder helped fit and distribute nearly 630 pairs of new shoes for students at Stiles Elementary School in Columbus. A donation that would not have been possible without its partnership with the association.
“We are given equipment – we are given turf shoes, trainers. We’re given all that, and we’re like, ‘Oh, that’s great,’” Goldean explains. “Every year we get new things and [ there are ] children who don’t even have shoes, like good running shoes.
Many NIL offers allow athletes to receive money or other benefits in exchange for endorsement of a product or service. Goldean chose another path.
“Emma chose the reverse, where she supports Samaritan’s Feet by raising money for us, so we can buy shoes to donate to underserved communities. So it’s a very different relationship,” says Kathy Slyder, Regional Manager the development of sports initiatives for Samaritan’s Feet.
As well as new shoes, Goldean and his teammates gave each student a “Hope Tote” – including socks, a hygiene kit and a message of encouragement written by someone from around the world.
“We have a great student population, many of whom come from communities that need a little extra help. And we rally around our students a lot, but sometimes we need extra help,” says Daniel Peters, the principal of Stiles Elementary.
So far, Emma has raised $60,000 towards her goal of $100,000 for the year. “I will be working with Samaritan’s Feet, I hope, for years to come,” Goldean points out. “I have a lifetime goal of around $600,000.”
But, when I ask her what the next step is, she says it’s just a small part of a much larger commitment. “It’s one thing to donate and give your money, which is amazing,” smiles Goldean. “But to be able to come here and see that money at work and see the smile on their face and brighten their day? It’s awesome. I love him so much and am so blessed.
Since their inception in 2003, Samaritan’s Feet and its partners have served more than nine million people in more than 100 countries and more than 500 US cities.
For more information on Samaritan’s Feet, click here. For donation details on Emma’s mission, you can click here.
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