Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. - Members of Lynn University's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee joined together on Monday night to bring relief to needy children. As part of Christine Gianacaci's Children's Outreach in conjunction with Lynn Athletics, 10 student-athletes, Big LU and three administrators handed out candy, Easter eggs and stuffed animals at the Chris Evert Children's Hospital at Broward General.
This was the inaugural event of Christine Gianacaci's Children's Outreach, started in honor of Christine Gianacaci, who was one of the six Lynn University students and faculty on the Journey of Hope lost in the tragic earthquake that shook Haiti on January 12. Two years ago Gianacaci purchased a Big LU party at the Lynn University Blue & White Auction and coordinated with Lynn's SAAC to carry out her initiative to help children.
"I truly loved everything about our visit to Chris Evert's Children's Hospital," said senior women's tennis player Christine Johnstone. "The opportunity to go there was not just about handing out candy and eggs; it was about bringing laughter and joy to these children. Seeing the smiles on the faces of all of the kids there was priceless and this small gesture was reciprocated to us, the athletes and staff, as well."
"As Big LU, it is always a pleasure to bring happiness to children, but in this case, it was one of my most memorable moments as the Lynn University mascot," added senior Chris Dillon, who dons the Big LU costume.
Lynn University's athletic department is committed to two Children's Outreach events per year beginning with Monday's experience. Joining Johnstone in attendance was Sunshine State Conference National SAAC representative and women's soccer player Natalie Feller, men's basketball player Pascal Schuler, women's golfer Rebecca Mangone, men's golfers Chris Goldan and Marcus Williams, volleyball athlete Kara Bailey and softball players Elizabeth Hawkins, Nikki Pallister and Mika Tatar, Director of Student-Athlete Services Sara Quatrocky, Marketing Coordinator Jon Roos and Senior Vice President for Administration Greg Malfitano.
"Christine's love for children and her passion to give back in community will never be forgotten," said Malfitano.