AMES, Iowa Iowa State’s Student-Athlete Advisory Council helped needy families celebrate Thanksgiving by distributing holiday baskets containing a ready-to-cook turkey, bread and pumpkin pie.  The effort was coordinated by SAAC members, including community outreach chair Dawn Caffrey.


“The people who received the baskets were very appreciative,” Caffrey said.  “This is one of the things we do to make an impact in the community.”


Caffrey, a junior member of the Iowa State cross country and track teams from Ankeny started calling four local churches earlier this month.


“The churches were helpful in alerting us to individuals who would appreciate the baskets,” Caffrey said.  “Fareway Stores were generous, donating 20 turkeys and the side dishes.  We picked up the baskets and distributed them Monday and Tuesday.”


SAAC president Jenny Mockler, senior member of the cross country and track teams from Formby, England, says community outreach is just part of what the student-athlete council does.


“We want to enrich our college careers beyond competition and help people in the community,” Mockler said.  “We will have other outreach efforts, including Adopt an Angel.”


The Adopt an Angel program links ISU student-athletes with children who might otherwise not receive personal gifts during the holiday season.


The SAAC has two representatives from each Iowa State athletics varsity sport.  In addition to community outreach, SAAC has social, academic and public relations committees. The program includes regular meetings in which coaches and athletic department staff speak to the council about intra-department issues.