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November 24, 2015

Archery Gives Back with Charity Shoots for the Holiday Season

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado - As Thanksgiving and the winter holiday season are approaching, archery programs across the nation are finding ways to give back.

The Archery School of the Rockies in Colorado Springs recently hosted a JOAD shoot where the young participants decided that instead of spending funds on trophies as awards, they wanted to use the money raised at the tournament to purchase and donate food.

The club also hosted a Toys for Tots drive, where everyone who donated a toy at the event received one free archery lesson.

Jennifer Samsel of Perfect 10 Archery in Palm Beach also put together a creative tournament combining a love of archery with a passion for giving back to the community.  

In the first week of December, she is hosting the "Christmas Toys for Tots Drive Shoot" where archers will come dressed up in "ugly Christmas sweaters" and will each bring a toy to donate.

Samsel shared: "I love what I do with archery and I really want to give back. When I started with Toys for Tots several years ago, I really loved seeing the kids' faces light up when they got something. I thought that if I could start some kind of charity archery event, maybe others would follow. I think it's going to be a great experience. My goal is to create the best holiday I can for these kids."

Samsel makes giving back a year-round theme through coaching students with special needs and bringing archery to schools and Boys and Girls Clubs. She commented: "I'm really passionate about what bringing archery to the community. I go in and explain what archery is, that it's really a sport, and I teach them proper form and technique."

During the summer, Samsel worked at the Kids Fitness Sports Festival in Palm Beach County, where she introduced archery to over 5,000 kids in two days. "It's a huge eye opener down here; kids come in and try out archery for the first time. We show them what we do and when they see the Olympic recurve target and equipment, they're shocked."

For other clubs looking to find a way to give back this holiday season, Samsel suggests: "I think there are a lot of organizations people can team up with and do fun shoots. Being creative can be tough, but if you network with your group, you can come up with really great ideas. As a coach, you lead by example, so I think you have to go out there and set the standards and be enthusiastic; give 110% and others will follow."


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