Sunday, December 9, 2012
Day 344: Volunteered For Chicago Bulls Charities
I've heard some instances of people getting the opportunity to meet their favorite celebrities or athletes, only to find that the person they've idolized isn't everything they've built them up to be. I've both known people and read about people whose encounters have ranged from disappointing to downright disrespectful. I bring this up because today, I had the complete opposite experience when I had the chance to meet some of my favorite athletes.
A couple of weeks ago, I was invited by Chicago Bulls Charities to volunteer for their annual holiday party for USO families and children from the Chicago Housing Authority, so today for my random act of kindness, I happily took them up on their invitation. The event gave the attendees the opportunity to meet the Bulls, bake cookies, take photos and videos with the players, and at the end receive a gift from Santa Claus. The smiles on the faces of the children were incredible and seeing them get the chance to meet their heroes was such a cool experience The players and coaching staff couldn't have been happier to be there and were genuinely excited to play with the children and volunteer their time. One of the more touching moments of the day came when one of the families received a FaceTime call from their father stationed in Kuwait. The players and coaches came over and spoke to the soldier and his comrades, thanked them for their service and wished them happy holidays. Maybe it was my lack of sleep last night, but there may have been a little welling of tears in my eye when I saw that happen. It wasn't just the players and coaches who made this a memorable experience. The people from Chicago Bulls Charities who put on this event, as well as Bulls play by play man Chuck Swirsky, were some of the nicest people I've met and it was easy to tell how much they cared about helping others. Although one of my rules for 366 Random Acts is that no act can benefit me, I must say that being able to meet Derrick Rose, Luol Deng and other Chicago Bulls was something that I will never forget.