Vern Hee / Pahrump Valley Times - Trojans football player Jace Clayton, a junior, helps out with a box at New Hope commodities giveaway on Saturday. Jace, at 250 pounds, hopes to improve the Trojans’ pass protection this year. The football team, which has benefitted from community support, gave back some last weekend.
The community of Pahrump loves Trojans football and supports its team each year.
On Saturday the football team got a chance to give back to the community, which has supported them all these years. Twenty team members lifted heavy boxes instead of weights to help the organizers at New Hope Fellowship, 781 West St., with the commodities giveaway.
The church receives commodities from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and distributes them to low-income families.
The recipients get a box of food containing meat, various canned vegetables and fruit. The church says it’s just a little supplemental food to get them through the month.
People must show Nevada identification and sign a declaration their household income doesn’t exceed 150 percent of federal poverty guidelines. This means for a family of two the gross income is under $1,750 per month.
The giveaway occurs at the church the second Saturday of every other month. The next giveaway will be Sept. 14.
The team arrived at 6 a.m. and helped move literally tons of food in preparation for the distribution.
Head Trojans Coach Joe Clayton said his wife Holly is a hairstylist. One of her clients apparently told Holly the church was in need of some muscle. He said by bringing the team together to help the church, he hoped to instill some team unity.
“I wanted them to hang out with each other outside of football, and on top of that, give back to the community. Everyone in the community is very supportive to us. Now it is our turn to give back to them.”
Joe said about 20 members of the team came out on Saturday. He said the church put his boys to good use and had them moving heavy boxes of food.
Sandy Tucker organizes the event and said having the boys made the job a lot easier.
“These guys got us started an hour early,” she said. “So having this many people, we were able to set up much quicker and we are doing 10 cars at a time. We were really moving. Also, now I get to go to their football games. I will always will take help and people can volunteer by calling me at 775- 751-1687 or they can just show up at 6 a.m. in the morning every other month.”
Overall, the members of the team had a good experience helping the needy get their food. Sophomore Shelton Cajudoy had no problem getting up early to help out at the church.
“It takes a lot to stick together to make stuff happen and you have to stick together to be one team to get things done,” he said.
His teammate Tyler Baumgarten agreed with him, but said it also taught him something about working with other people with different beliefs.
“I learned that even though there are differences with the people I have been working with here, you can set aside those differences and just work together,” he said.