Because spring breaks happen at different times for different schools, it doesn’t always mean a week off for college athletes. This year Central Methodist University track team members had their second meet of the year on the Thursday of spring break. Assistant Coach Aaron Decker, a member of Trinity UMC in Moberly, wanted to keep the team around and engaged during the week. So he put them to work helping the community.
“I was in church and Pastor Katy mentioned the city wanted to clean up downtown, and this seemed like an opportunity where we could help,” Decker said.
For three days, the students were bused from CMU at Fayette to Trinity UMC at Moberly. After a quick breakfast they split up to multiple job sites in the community. They went to multiple private residences of people who were elderly or had health issues and assisted them with various home maintenance work, including tearing down dilapidated out buildings, and doing a lot of painting. They also worked at the food bank and had a large crew at Safe Passage, a domestic violence shelter, painting and doing interior maintenance.
Hannah Smith, a freshman from Palmyra who does the long jump and triple jump, said it was a good week.
“I’ve been bonding with my team mates a lot through this, and it feels good to be doing something to help the community,” she said.
The spirit of service at CMU isn’t limited to the track team. On April 7 classes were cancelled at 700 students, faculty and staff participated in service projects in the surrounding community.