Saving lives at Salve Regina
Salve Regina head coach Bob Chesney has a crystal clear big picture idea on how to run a football program; and giving back to the community is a huge part of that picture.
Chesney, inspired by the work of Villanova head football coach Andy Talley, partnered with the Be The Match registry to help organize a campus wide bone marrow drive.
The football team was out in full force, informing people and directing them to the Rec Center where donor registration was taking place.
Coach Talley has been involved in raising awareness for bone marrow transplants since 1992 when he was first told of the struggles facing the 10,000 people in need of bone marrow transplants. The chances of those affected actually finding an available donor is as low as 66%.
In 2010 Talley started his own non-profit organization called the "Andy Talley Bone Marrow Foundation" and has been able to enlist the help of 29 other college football programs, like Salve Regina, to lead bone marrow registry drives on their own campuses across the country. In 2010 Talley set out to get 5,000 new registrants, when all was said and done, they had added 8,800. Needless to say, he's passionate about the mission.
For his program at Salve Regina, Chesney aims to develop well rounded individuals. "It's not just about football. It's not just about the academics. That's something that we preach a lot to every kid that comes in here. We also want you to be pretty good off the field as well, and in the community. So what better way to reach out and really get involved in the community and make ourselves and our school proud."
One of the organizers commended the use of athletics to get spread the word, saying that "One of the benefits of working with an athletics team, is that they're already organized, they're used to doing community service and a lot of times the coaches are passionate about getting involved in other things affect their community."
Take a look at what Chesney and the team were able to put together to raise awareness on their campus.