DENVER (KDVR) — Right before the National Football League training camp begins, Broncos’ Justin Simmons stepped on the field Saturday at Ranum Middle School to mentor a group of Colorado kids.
Simmons teamed up with A Precious Child, a local nonprofit providing children in need with opportunities and resources to empower them to achieve their full potential. Together, they held Simmons’ first giveSPORTS skills camp.
“It just means everything to me because I know it means everything to the kids here,” Simmons said. “Having that type of relationship, I know the impact of that. I’m a product of being where I am today because there was a Justin Simmons growing up that invested into me, there were multiple.”
FOX31’s Nicole Fierro captured the special moments at camp, the laughs, achievements and lessons learned out on the field.
According to Project Play, the typical American family spends an average of $700 per year on their child’s sports activities, but some spend upwards of $35,000 to pay for equipment, travel, camps, fees and more.
“To be able to get to do this is something I wouldn’t get to do normally,” grandmother Cheryl Hogarth told FOX31.
Hogarth is taking care of eight of her grandchildren, raising them at her home. Her husband has taken on two jobs to try to provide for them.
“They were coming from some really tough circumstances, you have to give them a life and my husband and I are like we have to make them happy,” Hogarth said. “There’s a lot of therapies and a lot of things going on at our house. It makes it kind of impossible to afford the extra things kids get to do, but this summer is not a bust because we got to do that today, I’m so excited.”
Kids tell FOX31, being able to sack an NFL hero of theirs was a dream come true.
“I only get to see them in football games but talking to them in real life, it’s really cool,” 8-year-old Lilianna Burris said.
“Empowering our youth is so important, that’s why I love doing things like this, it means the world,” Simmons said.