Linebacker LaMarr Woodley made a $60,000 donation to Saginaw (Michigan) Public Schools to help cover the budget cut that was being made to the athletic department, which would have resulted in students having to pay $75 each to participate in sports.
Woodley knows it would have been tough for him if he had to pay to play sports in school and doesn’t want other kids to be in that situation.
“It was just something that needed to be done,” said Woodley. “I know how it is being in this situation. If I had to pay to play sports, I knew what the outcome of that would be. It was just something that needs to be done.
“It’s hard times for people back at home, and people everywhere. If it allows a kid an opportunity to earn a scholarship, or just learn about playing team ball or having a mentor in some of the coaches, because that’s what they are, and a family can’t afford 75 dollars, it would be tough. I wasn’t going to sit back and allow that to happen. I was able to do something about it and I did it.”
Woodley’s donation covered the entire budget cut, which includes his former school Saginaw High.
“It will help about 800 kids who won’t have to pay this year to play sports in high school or middle school,” said Woodley. “Now they don’t have to worry about that. I’m sure there were some kids worried about the money and hopefully I helped out a little bit.”
The donation was made through the newly found LaMarr Woodley Foundation, something he plans to use to continue to help in Saginaw and Pittsburgh.
“Sports got to me where I’m at right now and this money could help somebody attain a scholarship for next year,” said Woodley. “It’s just helping people out. People helped me along the way and now I’m doing my job and giving back to my hometown.”
Coach Mike Tomlin was impressed with Woodley stepping up and making the donation and continuing his commitment to the community.
“I think that’s a responsibility that they all embrace,” said Coach Mike Tomlin of the donation. “He’s the kind of guy that is not looking for acknowledgement in that area but he understands the responsibility of being LaMarr Woodley.
“I complimented him on it to be quite honest with you. That’s a man that took $60,000 and provided potentially a lifetime of opportunity. If there’s one kid that didn’t get an opportunity to play sports and does, imagine if he goes on and gets an athletic scholarship and how much that $60,000 has helped someone. It’s part of being us, and I’m glad that men like him embrace it.”
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