By Anne Marie Amacher
A new community service initiative called the Iowa Hall of Pride Challenge gives schools the opportunity to do service in the community and a chance to play in a Pride Scrimmage game.
All Iowa middle and high schools were invited to sign up for the initiative; Assumption High School in Davenport and Regina Junior/Senior High School in Iowa City did so. Schools that accept the challenge choose a service project to do and select what school they want to play for a scrimmage game. Joe Barrer, head coach for Assumption’s boys’ basketball, wanted his team to play a Catholic high school. “It worked out that Regina signed up and they were in close proximity to us.”
The pride scrimmage game was scheduled for Dec. 1 at Assumption. A freshman-sophomore game was to be held, followed by the varsity game, he said. Mary Ford, who helped coordinate the events, said a dinner was to be served prior to the varsity game. A portion of proceeds from the dinner and game will go to the Embracing Our Future campaign, which advocates for Catholic schools and provides financial assistance to families in Scott County.
For the community service aspect of the challenge, Barrer wanted students to do something to thank parishes that support the school financially. “Without the nine parishes’ financial support we wouldn’t be here. And we also appreciate their spiritual support.”
All Bettendorf and Davenport parishes were contacted about having players assist them as needed. Barrer chose to have the students give a day of volunteer service on Nov. 24 because the players were on Thanksgiving break and no other activities were scheduled.
Freshmen, sophomore and varsity boys split out among the various parishes. At Holy Family Parish in Davenport, Roberta Pegorick had a variety of indoor activities for the players to complete. With the threat of inclement weather, the players were excited to hear they would be indoors, said Pegorick, the director of religious education.
The players removed old missals from church pews and replaced them with new ones for Advent. After hauling the old missals to the neighboring All Saints Catholic School, they washed and dried the church pews.
Regina students were taking a leadership role in the annual Christmas basket program. This is the 10th year for the program, said James Davis, a senior at Regina and communications chair for this year’s Christmas basket project. Eighteen families in need will be served by the project in which each religion class fills a basket for a family. Those baskets will be delivered later in December.
“The families we serve are current clients at the Crisis Center food bank. In conjunction with the Crisis Center, we accept applications from 18 families,” Davis said. “These families are generally working members of our community who are in need because of specific situations, such as recent unemployment, medical issues or family size, which requires additional resources.”