Women’s Soccer Raises Funds for Veterans’ ProgramsNovember 3, 2014

This Family and Alumni Weekend, the Rockhurst University women’s soccer team helped raise more than spirits.

During that September weekend, the team also took the opportunity to raise funds for programs benefiting veterans at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Kansas City. Taking the field in camouflage uniforms, team members sold T-shirts to the crowd with a design that read “Headers for Heroes” across the front.

According to senior forward Taylor Skala, the idea actually from her younger brother, whose high school sports team raised money for veterans in a similar way. In the past, she said the team has organized similar fundraisers for other causes like breast cancer research.

“This is definitely part of the Rockhurst tradition of giving back to the community,” Skala said.

Melissa Jacobson, chief of voluntary service at the Kansas City VA Medical Center, said that tradition, and the $3,870 raised by the soccer team, will help support her department’s programs.

“It can be anything for which the VA does not receive federal funding,” Jacobson said on how the funds raised might be used.

That can range from providing socks or underwear to veterans in need who come into the VA or hosting World Series watch parties for the center’s inpatient veterans, as they did last week. With about 50,000 veterans who are part of the Kansas City VA network, Jacobson said her office is always trying to find ways to maximize contributions.

“It’s a huge donation for us,” she said. “This will go a million miles.”

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