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GMC Football Players Volunteer at Comfort Farms
Georgia Military College Football Players Volunteer at Comfort Farms
From weed whacking to moving pigs, the Georgia Military College football team was hard at work on Saturday out at Comfort Farms in Milledgeville. Comfort Farms is a place of solace where veterans can spend time at a local organic farm to escape from everyday life and improve their mental health. That’s why Coach Bert Williams, Georgia Military College Athletic Director, says he volunteered his football players for a workday at the farm.
“I wanted to help out a worthy organization that needed a lot of ‘sweaty equity’ and I wanted our players to develop the sense of giving back to the community,” Williams said. “While many of our athletes may not have the fiscal ability to donate, they all have the ability to give their time and effort, and that is often more meaningful.”
Each year Williams says he tries to find an opportunity in the community to engage all of GMC’s athletes. Over the years Georgia Military College athletes have worked with Habitat for Humanity, they’ve worked community summer camps, and have done beautification projects in town. At Comfort Farms the boys spent nearly all day working, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a lunch break in between. The team whacked and pulled weeds, cut grass, spread mulch and compost, moved pigs and mulched out their pens, they cleared out what will become living areas for veterans, and they cleaned up and disposed of trash in the area, pressure washed buildings, cleared pathways around some of the livestock pens, bush-hogged, and cleared a significant distance on a proposed 5k run on the property.
“All of the players did a nice job putting in a lot of hard work that needed to be done, but some really dove in with gusto and truly enjoyed the effort,” Williams said. “Of course there was a lot of funny commentary on the ride back to campus involving finding snakes and working with the pigs.”
All of the work done on Saturday is something Founder and Executive Director of Comfort Farms, Jon Jackson, says was much needed.
“Some of the guys were apprehensive about being around the animals… these guys were holding pigs, but then after the work was done, they were comfortable enough to pet the sheep, they were just really fascinated by the work that was going on,” Jackson said. “They really respected the place and what it stood for and I was greatly appreciative of all the hard work they did.”
Williams says this experience was a learning opportunity for the team, and that doing work to help the community in which they play is important. He says he anticipates the group will make another trip out to Comfort Farms again.