The Kansas City Chiefs had a busy afternoon spending time at schools focusing on the importance of education and health on Tuesday.
Chiefs' linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis got the day started with City Year Central Middle School students discussing what it means to be a strong leader.
City Year is an education focused nonprofit that places mentors and tutors in schools to keep kids on track to graduate.
The partnership between City Year and the Chiefs added an extra layer to show students opportunities that are out there if you are successful in school.
"These are kids that have a lot of potential, but maybe they struggle a little bit in their behavior," City Year Kansas City Development Director Jeff Shafer said. "It's really important for this group of kids to get an extra incentive and to hear from somebody they might look up to about what discipline means because we want our kids to channel that energy into being leaders in the community."
Pierre-Louis addressed the students as a whole about his personal experience with discipline and leadership before they broke up into smaller groups to discuss specific leadership qualities and leaders in their lives.
Chiefs linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis joined City Year Kansas City to visit with a select group of students at Central Middle School to encourage positive behavior, academic success, and to discuss what it means to be a leader
This event hit close to home for Pierre-Louis as he recalled his time as a student.
"There's many times that I could have turned left instead of going right and it's because of the help of others around me—people I didn't ask to help me—saw something in me and decided I want to steer this kid in the right direction," Pierre-Louis said. "I want to pay that forward to all those people, staff members, teachers, coaches that helped me out without me asking."
Elsewhere at nearby Sunset Valley Elementary, Chiefs' punter Dustin Colquitt with visited students for a special Fuel Up to Play 60 school assembly.
Colquitt, along with members from the Midwest Dairy Council, awarded a $5,000 grant check to both Sunset Valley Elementary and Lee's Summit Elementary – a total of $10,000 awarded from the Hometown Grant.
The Hometown Grant, developed by Fuel Up to Play 60 and the NFL, provides all 32 organizations with an opportunity to identify deserving schools in their area and award them with a $10,000 grant to help meet their health and wellness goals.
"Lee Summit Elementary is looking at putting in a rock wall and starting smoothies for breakfast," Lee Summit School District Assistant Director of Nutrition Lori Danella said. "At Sunset Valley we will also be starting the smoothies and then they are wanting soccer goals—something they haven't had."
And Colquitt got to help celebrate these new goals with the students.
Dustin Colquitt and the Chiefs Community Caring Team visited Sunset Valley Elementary School for a Fuel Up to Play60 school assembly, and awarded a $5,000 grant checks to Sunset Valley and Lee???s Summit Elementary
"Dustin [Colquitt] is our Fuel Up to Play 60 player ambassador and he emulates healthy eating and physical activity, plus he's a great spokesperson and role model for students, so to have him able to join us is just a really great opportunity," Midwest Dairy Council Health & Wellness Program Manager Robyn Stuewe said.
And it's an important role that Colquitt hopes to encourage others to take on.
"Well I have kids and obviously we were all kids at one point growing up and you see an opportunity to make it better for these kids," Colquitt said. "Any decision we made when we were younger, we can say I was in your shoes once and this is how you can make it better for yourself, so we can affect that in a positive way and then hopefully when they grow up and have kids, they can do the same."
To learn more about Fuel Up to Play 60, visit its website.