Sideline Spotlight: East Hamilton Cheerleaders Volunteer Off the Field
With more than 30 girls on the roster, East Hamilton's cheerleading team is more like a squad of a different kind. Ã¢ÂÂMy army is what I like to call them,Ã¢ÂÂ says coach Kayla Jones.
So when they take on a challenge, people take notice. Ã¢ÂÂI always stress to them that it's important to not only represent on the field or on the court,Ã¢ÂÂ Jones says. Ã¢ÂÂBut in school and in the community, everyone always has eyes on the cheerleaders.Ã¢ÂÂ And what people see when they look at this squad is not just their stunts or tumbling passes, but what they do away from the sidelines.
On a Friday night not long ago, several senior cheerleaders volunteered their time to help the women of Orange Grove get all dolled up, an event sponsored by ChattanoogaÃ¢ÂÂs Therapeutic Services. They gave manicures to several ladies with different levels of disabilities, and itÃ¢ÂÂs just one of the volunteer opportunities these cheerleaders have taken on.
Senior Mary Allyson McGinnis says, "Our squad benefits from it so the community can see that we are not just committed to practicing and doing our best there, but doing our best in the community as well and giving back to others." Showing their fellow students and East Hamilton supporters that sometimes the most important kind of cheering, doesn't always happen on the field.
Ã¢ÂÂWe really need to go out in our community and do good things,Ã¢ÂÂ says senior Emily Knight. Ã¢ÂÂIt was really, really fun, I'm glad we did it.Ã¢ÂÂ
Ã¢ÂÂA lot of times people see them in their cute little outfits with a smile on their face and they're so much more than that,Ã¢ÂÂ explains Coach Jones. Ã¢ÂÂBeing able to focus on their grades and focus on the community and focus on things larger than themselves and larger than cheerleading, itÃ¢ÂÂs great for them not only in high school but in life as well."
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