NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Several members of the Quinnipiac women's volleyball team recently visited the Episcopal Church of St. Paul and St. James this past weekend as a part of the Athletic Department's Positive Play Initiative. The upperclassmen of the volleyball team all traveled down to New Haven and helped hand out food to the people of need.
"Anytime that we have a chance to help out people and put a smile on someone's face we will jump at the opportunity," Quinnipiac women's volleyball head coach Kris Czaplinski said. "We have already reached out to the church and plan on continuing to help throughout the year."
Seniors Logan Riker (Bowling Green, Ohio) and Bonnie Conklin (Plano, Texas), juniors Brittanie Robinson (Fresno, Calif.), Tierra Allen (Sumter, S.C.) and Tanner Celestin (Norco, Calif.), and sophomores Melissa Dal Pozzo (Reading, Mass.) and Chandler Thornton (Arlington, Texas) all participated in the event and were honored to have the chance to help those in need.
According to Conklin, "It's a very humbling experience that really opened our eyes and is something that our team definitely wants to continue to do in the future."
The Bobcats arrived early Saturday morning around 8:00 to help with the church's weekly Loaves & Fishes program. The ministry began with a food pantry but it has grown into much more. The girls began organizing food upon their arrival and served each person a full bag of groceries. The weekly program lasted from 9:00 – 10:30 and served hundreds of people that gathered outside the church. No one was turned away and the Bobcats helped serve a total of over 200 people last Saturday morning.
The Episcopal Church of St. Paul and St. James was first established in 1852 and have been at the currently location in New Haven since 1899. More than 160 years later, the church continues to "grow as a thriving community that is strong in spirit and steadfast in our commitment to serving one another."
This year's group of Bobcats continue with their intensive Positive Play involvement from last season. Coach Czaplinski, in just his second season, has instilled a magnified sense of community within his group of players. His team ran several activities last year including several volunteer coaching sessions in local area high schools as well as involvement in Quinnipiac's BIG EVENT.
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