$20,000 grant supplies sports goods for Gators

By By Kara Carrier / American Press

Athletic programs at LaGrange High

School were able to purchase needed supplies and equipment courtesy of a

grant coordinated

by the Community Foundation of Southwest Louisiana. The grant

provided the school with more than $20,000 to assist basketball,

track, baseball and football programs.

During a news conference Friday,

LaGrange students and coaches thanked the foundation and donors and

showed off some of the

equipment the grant enabled the school to buy, such as baseball

bats, track and field hurdles and blocks, basketball training

aids and uniforms.

Rico Guillory, principal at LaGrange,

said the money takes some of the burden off of coaches and parents, who

would normally

have to try to raise funds to keep the programs going, especially

with small sports programs. “With these smaller sports,

they usually don’t have a large base of admission like football

does,” Guillory said. “They need more money because expenses

of sports are high. So they really need some extra help.”

Guillory also said that athletics play a big role in students attending and doing well in school and having the grant will

contribute to that.

According to Sara Judson, Community

Foundation CEO, the grant was the first of its kind for her

organization. She said the

grant was the product of several LaGrange alumni who sit on the

LaGrange High School Athletic and Educational Fund Advisory

Board wanting to do something for their school.

“We had dollars raised through a variety of contributions, and that’s how we were able to make the first grant,” Judson said.

“What I love about this is that people who are passionate about a cause can get together and as a group can have a bigger

impact than someone can individually.”