Atlanta Hawks forward Mike Muscala and former Atlanta Falcons running back Jamal Anderson joined 23 volunteers from Invesco and BNY Mellon at Humphries Elementary on Nov. 13, 2014 to paint the school’s library/media center.
The volunteer effort is part of a larger renovation of the library funded by Invesco and BNY Mellon through the Dreambuilders Foundation. BNY Mellon executives from New York joined their Atlanta-based Invesco counterparts for the joint service project. The full renovation of the library will include fresh paint, new blinds, new furniture and rugs, as well as a new aquarium for the students. Muscala and Anderson participated in the work and spent time with students at the school.
“There are so many athletes who want to give back to either the community they play in, or the city where they are from, so we get athletes and corporations involved in community outreach,” said former National Football League player and Dreambuilders Foundation President Akin Ayodele. “It’s good for kids to meet these guys who have gone through what they’ve been through, and to see that they’ve made it. You see their eyes light up, they have a million questions, and once they realize who these athletes are, they are shell-shocked. A lot of times, the athletes see themselves in these kids.”
Ayodele explained that Invesco and BYN Mellon reached out to his foundation with a $12,000 donation, and his foundation contacted Humphries Elementary after learning about the school’s support from the nonprofit organization, Blessings in a Backpack. “We try to leave a footprint here. To be able to help Humphries Elementary fund the renovation of the media center and then to bring people in to volunteer their time is huge.” Next month, Humphries Elementary will receive an additional $15,000 from the Dreambuilders Foundation to cover the cost of the remaining 150 backpacks needed for its Blessings in a Backpack project.