Sport and physical education have shown that they can play an effective role in the fight against HIV/AIDS by providing a popular site for preventive education. In light of the proven capacity of sport to be effective against HIV/AIDS, the role of the facilitator or coach is instrumental in transmitting appropriate messaging and establishing an environment where youth feel comfortable and open to learn . Here at Grassroots we believe that our strongest asset are our coaches. In this blog we meet current coach Seamus Roddy and learn how he inspires students to learn about HIV/AIDS and healthy life choices. Seamus AKA Moose is a sophomore and member of the Cross Country team at George Washington University. A native from Pittsburgh Pennsylvania Moose has been a coach with Grassroot since his freshmen year. We take the time to meet Moose and learn and how being Grassroot has been an important element in his University experience so far.
What motivated you to begin work with Grassroots?
I first became in Grassroots when I trained in the second semester of my freshman year. I had heard that it was a fun way to get involved with community service, and GW Life Skills coordinator/role model Ted Costigan pushed me to attend training. I was also pretty floored when I learned about DC’s HIV/AIDS rate. For the capital of the most powerful nation in the world to have such a shocking and appalling health situation tends to mobilize the people who understand the scope of it.
What do you enjoy the most about being a Grassroots coach?
One part of Grassroots that is really awesome is that no matter what is going on with school or your sport, the kids in your program are always ready to have fun and really do their best to understand the material. Grassroots can be a chance to be goofy like a 7th grader again, which is often a welcome relief from day-to-day life. Also, I have come to really cherish the relationships and friendships I have built with other Grassroots coaches. It is a great place to meet other athletes and make friends.