TSU Grants Christmas Wishes for 20 Families
Thursday, December 22, 2011
Tennessee State University in cooperation with the Bethlehem Centers of Nashville helped grant 20 families their Christmas wishes on Tuesday, Dec. 21 at the Gentry Center.  

During the start of the Holiday season, the TSU Athletic Department displayed a Star of Bethlehem Christmas Tree in the Gentry Center and every star (wish) was adopted.

After the conclusion of the men's basketball game with Alabama A&M on Tuesday, each recipient received the gifts that he or she had listed on their respective star. Recipients ranged in age from elementary school children to senior citizens.

"It was a great blessing for the 20 families," said Steve Fleming, the Star of Bethlehem Director of the Family Resource Center/Youth Programs. "Tennessee State is a good steward in our community. We are very appreciative of their efforts, not only for this Christmas program, but also for their general humanitarian efforts throughout the year."

TSU and the Bethlehem Centers have provided opportunities for the Nashville community for nearly a century as the university embraces its' Centennial Celebration in April.

"TSU helps us with tutorial services and TSU is there to provide educational opportunities for our children and our families," noted Fleming. "We are just glad and fortunate to be partners with TSU in hopes that we will be able to steer kids in direction of college education."

The impact of reaching out and giving to others in the community was certainly moving for many within the Tennessee State University Athletic Department.

"It was genuine and heartfelt to see the way our coaches and staff bonded to make sure all of these people received what they had asked for," noted TSU Senior Associate Athletic Director Valencia Jordan. "You could see the gratitude and appreciation from the recipients. I believe this has been one of the best community service efforts we have completed here at Tennessee State University."

The Bethlehem Centers of Nashville and the Holiday Outreach team serves over 400 families during the holiday season, which includes the holiday toy store and Christmas outreach services.