On May 10th, I had the pleasure of working with Fort Dodge High School softball and baseball programs. At the beginning of my presentation, I talk about weathering the storms that will come with any season. There will always be highs, and there will certainly be lows; this especially rings true to how well a team will play.
I make reference to the guards for the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and how they have been standing guard, doing their duty, even in the face of adversity. The guards are continuously on watch, round the clock, every second of every day since 1937. The sentinels are always on watch and standing guard no matter what. Rain or shine, summer or winter, they are present. Even in the midst of Hurricane Isabelle when all of DC was evacuated, the guards did not leave their duty to the grave, despite given the choice to head inland to safer ground. They weathered the storm, literally.
Every team and individual will have literal and figurative storms in life, as well. The irony of this analogy is that about a week after my visit to Fort Dodge, there were massive thunderstorms that rolled through the area, knocking down trees, power lines, and doing much damage throughout the town. Over 1000 homes were without power the next day, and school was even closed do to the outage.
Many teams talk about community service, having a helping spirit, and putting WE over ME, but the Fort Dodge softball team lived it out. Not only did they weather the storm, they contributed to help others with the clean up of their town instead of having practice and preparing for a season that was less than a week away. Coach Adams said, “We wanted to come together and become an even stronger team to help our community.”
I am sure the time spent helping others was well worth it, and they were able to make an impact.
My challenge for you is to find those projects that your team can help with this season. Make a point of it to provide opportunities for your players and program to give back and be selfless.
I am hoping to generate a list of ideas to share with other coaches, so please email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with projects or community service you currently do within your program that might help others, as well.