Three Francis Marion University athletic programs have joined forces with the Team IMPACT organization and adopted/signed local youngsters onto their squads.
In 2016, the women's basketball program drafted Darlington resident Toriana Douglas (pictured far right).
In 2015, the women's soccer team drafted Paisleigh Butler of Florence (pictured far left).
In 2014, the men's soccer team drafted Maddox Danniel of Florence (pictured middle).
On each occasion, the athletic department held a adoption/signing ceremony with the public being invited.
Team IMPACT is a national organization based in Boston, whose mission is to improve the quality of life for children facing life-threatening and chronic illnesses through the power of team.
Team IMPACT children are drafted on to college athletic teams, local to where they live and, in effect, become official members of the team from Draft Day through to Graduation.
Established in 2011, Team IMPACT has already matched 1000 children with collegiate teams at over 430 institutions in 45 states, improving the quality of life of hundreds of courageous children and touching the lives of over 25,000 student-athletes.
Team IMPACT believes that by focusing on the best experience for the child, all those involved can also significantly impact families, student-athletes, colleges and communities. The child joins the athletic team and the student-athletes join the child’s support team.
Through this relationship, the child gains great strength, camaraderie and support, while the student-athletes are taught lessons about courage, resiliency and life perspective.
Participating Team IMPACT teams are fully trained on how to be the best teammates and role models they can be to their youngest teammate. Team training focuses on understanding the child and family’s situation, the impact they have on the child’s quality of life, and maximizing the value of the relationship.
Refresher training is provided annually to remind each team of these key points.
Once a child successfully reaches his or her goals and the desired outcomes are achieved, the child will graduate from the program. It is Team IMPACT’S belief that graduating and transitioning back into their typical routine will lead to the best long-term benefits for the child. It is typical for each relationship to last at least 2 years, but as each child is different, the timing of graduation varies for each relationship.