Feb. 2, 2012
WASHINGTON - With the absence of a midweek game, members of the Georgetown University women's basketball squad used the free time to give back on Monday afternoon. Seven members of the team along with Director of Basketball Operations Tasha Harris went to Children's National Medical Center in Northwest D.C., to spend time with patients at the facility.
The trip was especially meaningful to freshman guard Taylor Brown (Bowie, Md./Bishop McNamara) whose family went through a childhood illness. Brown's sister, Shawna, who is now 21, developed a tumor on her knee ten years ago at age 11. Shawna went through chemotherapy and her cancer went into remission, but it was a trying time for the Brown family.
"Being there just reminded me of everything we went through," said Brown. "It just means so much to those families for people to come in and visit."
"The nurses went to different rooms and announced we were there so a lot of kids came out of their rooms to hang with us," said sophomore Andrea White (Lancaster, Va./Lancaster).
Volunteering comes in many forms and with the patients at the medical center, most were just looking for someone fun to play with. The girls obliged by doing arts and crafts and playing games.
"We made bookmarks and bracelets with the kids," said White. "We also played games like Pictionary and Chutes and Ladders."
Just talking with the patients and making bookmarks were the little things that the student-athletes could do to brighten the day for a child dealing with a tough situation.
"I'd never done anything like that, so it was a new experience," said freshman Jasmine Jackson (Old Bridge, N.J./Old Bridge).
With flu season in full swing, there were areas of the building off limits to visitors to prevent the spread of illness. Despite the regulations, it was an outstanding opportunity for the student-athletes to spend some time with the patients.
One of the patients wore the Blue & Gray to show some love for the Hoyas.
"There was one little boy with a Georgetown sweatshirt and a Hoyas hat on, I think he was most excited to see us," said White.
Children's National Medical Center is the only exclusive provider of pediatric care in the metropolitan Washington area and is the only freestanding children's hospital between Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Norfolk and Atlanta. Serving the nation's children for 140 years, Children's National is a proven leader in the development and application of innovative new treatments for childhood illness and injury.
Children's team of pediatric healthcare professionals care for more than 360,000 patients each year who come from throughout the region, nation and world. It is the largest non-governmental provider of pediatric care in the District of Columbia, providing more than $50 million in uncompensated care.
Even with a busy schedule including class, practice, games and travel, the Georgetown women's basketball squad has found time to give back and gain perspective on the bigger picture off the Hilltop.