AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Jaylon Smith spent Wednesday afternoon hanging out at Cinergy with the over 300 kids who are a part of the summer camp program at the Maverick Boys and Girls Club.
Smith was a surprise for the kids who attend the Maverick Boys and Girls Club.
It’s an opportunity Jaylon Smith says he was happy to join in on.
“Honestly, just growing up, being a kid,” said Smith. “In my childhood, there was always people that came into town, came into my life and was just an inspiration.”
From air hockey to basketball, Smith says he was there to let kids know anything is possible.
“To have a clear eye view," said Smith. "A focused vision, a determined belief and earned dreams. Anything you want to accomplish in life, it can be done, with proper hard work and just the right connections.”
It’s a message the Maverick Boys and Girls Club supports, as over 80% of the kids they serve are at or below the poverty line.
“He was a club kid himself, so it really means a lot to the kids to see somebody who was were they were at one point in time, and yet he’s so successful today,” said Donna Soria, Executive Director at the Maverick Boys and Girls Club.
Smith, who returned to Notre Dame to finish his degree this off season, hopes his path can serve as motivation for children who may be growing up with similar circumstances.
“They’re seeing a guy like myself, who was in similar shoes,” said Smith. “During my childhood, with experiencing rough times and things of that nature, to be able to persevere and get through. It matters for the young individual to see someone like them.”
The Maverick says in addition to hanging out with a Dallas Cowboy, the field trip to Cinergy gave many of their kids an opportunity to visit a place they never have.
“This is love in action. We didn’t pay a dime for this,” said Soria.
As the kids in attendance enjoy the rest of the summer, Smith hopes they’ll take Wednesday’s experience with them.
“The sky is the limit for these kids,” said Smith. “The resources are growing. We just have to continue to feed positive thoughts and positive energy into these kids.”
If you’d like to volunteer with the Maverick Boys and Girls Club, you can call (806) 372-8393.