By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN
It’s that time of year again where I’m sure your twitter feed is getting filled with RTs from people who are trying to get their team’s nominee to win the Walter Payton Man of the Year award. The Walter Payton Man of The Year Award goes to the player who is involved in their community off the field.
Each team nominates a player who they feel is most deserving. The winner will get a total of $500,000, with half going to the winner’s charity of choice, and the other half going to Character Playbook. Character Playbook is a digital learning initiative that helps children learn how to build character, and develop good interpersonal skills. This is an initiative between the NFL and United Way.
The Detroit Lions 2017 nominee is defensive tackle Haloti Ngata. Ngata’s charity is his foundation, The Haloti Ngata Family Foundation. They raise money to give to deserving organizations to help them with things that they may need. They have given money to camps, and are very active in education. The foundation also sponsors the Ofa Ngata Fund. Ofa was Ngata’s mother who helped him study for the ACT so that he could get into college.
The Ofa Ngata Fund sponsors free ACT preparation classes for high schoolers in the Salt Lake City School District. In their inaugural year in 2015, they had about 150 students. They are looking forward to having over 400 students this year. The family holds a traditional Luau to raise money for their foundation, as well. Each year, the Ngata’s host a family for a game. They give them an all expenses paid trip to see Haloti Ngata play.
In a year where activism and community involvement has come to the forefront in the NFL, this award becomes even more meaningful this year. While there are plenty of deserving players, the Lions have a very good nominee in Haloti Ngata.
RT: #WPMOYChallenge + Ngata @sportstori sat down with @Haloti_Ngata92 to discuss being a finalist for both the Walter Payton Man of the Year honor and the Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award → https://t.co/AmtKbl3Gkh pic.twitter.com/3jqMVMneWG
— Detroit Lions (@Lions) December 17, 2017
#WPMOYChallenge + Ngata
Talk Lions with Sonja on Twitter @Mom23RN