29 Dec The Billings Adults Are Giving Back This Holiday Season
Billings, MT– With a couple months to go in the year, Billings Adults co-Local Program Coordinator, Kim Farley, sat and reflected on 2021 and her team’s successes, pondering how she and her athletes could show their appreciation to the community that supports them so much. In the end, Kim decided to challenge her team of over 100 athletes, the largest in the state, to make a positive difference in the life of someone at every chance they could. She asked athletes submit their stories of helping others to her and fellow volunteer, Tim Hust, so that they could track the impact their team had on the community. They named this program Make the World a Better Place through the Holidays, and hope it can be a learning experience for their team, as well as show how the team is giving back to the community.
When asked about the program, Kim said, “The holidays are so hectic that taking a minute out of your day to help someone else can make a world of difference in their lives.” One athlete took Kim’s words to heart and helped others holding the door of one of the local WalMart for nearly 20 minutes during a local shopping outing. When asked why he held the door so long, he said, “people just kept coming!” With that example in mind, here are four more extraordinary things members of the Billings Adults athletes have done or are doing this holiday season to make the world a better place for others.
On Christmas day, a handful of team members took time out of their day to help serve Christmas dinner at the Rescue Mission in Billings, helping serve hundreds of meals to those in need.
Two athletes, who purchase Christmas gifts for each other every year, decided to break tradition, concerned that one of their teammates would not be receiving any gifts due to financial hardship. These two athletes took the money they would have normally used to purchase gifts for each other, opting to both buy gifts for their teammate they were concerned about, ensuring a gift to help celebrate Christmas could be had by all.
An athlete who lives in the Heights makes sure to shovel her elderly neighbor’s walk and driveway every time it snows, making life in the cold significantly easier for her neighbor who no longer has to have wet feet when she needs to leave the house.
One athlete’s efforts are not limited to the holiday season, instead taking place year-round. This athlete lives in one of a handful of group homes their provider services and takes the time every week to help the other homes by taking out the trash, shoveling their walks, and completing small maintenance projects, ensuring the members of the other homes are thoroughly supported.
Kim and Tim are extremely proud of how their team has answered the challenge. When asked if she thinks her athletes will continue to go out of their way to help others after the holiday season, Kim responded, “I hope this will carry on after the holidays. The athletes give so much without being asked or noticed, all throughout the year.”
Thank you to the Billings Adults for showing that while recognition isn’t needed, Special Olympics Montana athletes frequently give back to their communities and use their abilities to help however and whenever they can. We hope everyone is having and continues to have a joyful holiday season.