I recently accepted the challenge to raise funds to support the YMCA of Greater Houston.
As a volunteer and board member with the Tellepsen Family Downtown YMCA, I have seen first-hand how the organization is making a difference in the lives of youth and families in our community.
My YMCA story begins in Pearland and playing baseball with my buddies in the early '90s, learning team dynamics, sportsmanship, and a whole lot of humility. At the time I was probably more worried about playing like Jeff Bagwell and Mike Piazza but nearly 30 years later my memories are all about the friendships and values I learned. The sense of comraderie has always stuck with me. I made friends there that I can still call to this day if I need a helping hand.
At the Y, we impact thousands of lives every year through the programs we offer in the areas of eliminating drowning, improving academic performance, eliminating chronic disease and childhood obesity and creating opportunities for social equity. We strive to offer to members of our community an environment that fosters personal growth, leadership skills and healthy relationships.
I love volunteering my time to the Angel Tree campaign, which helps needy kids and families make their holidays a little brighter. This past holiday I even got to play Santa Claus for an afternoon. It was hard not to get misty-eyed the whole day seeing parents feel reassured that a part of the holiday was taken care of.
My YMCA story continues to this day at the Downtown Houston location where I have found that exercise has helped me combat my high blood pressure diagnosis. Exercise has always been a great way for me to stay mentally centered, going back to my high school days. There is no bad that can't be improved by a little cardio, a little Dead (Hey, I sneak in some Katy Perry and Lady Gaga too), and the surroundings at the YMCA. The mental clarity I get from the YMCA is better than anything else I have found.
Your support to our cause makes a true impact, allowing us to help those who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford to participate in Y programs. We believe that lasting personal and social change can only come about when we all work together to invest in our kids, our health and neighbors.
Please consider making a gift today and support our efforts to strengthen our community through the YMCA.
I will make sure and give you a big Craig hug next time I see you!