All foster teen Cody wanted for Christmas was a jersey from his favorite football player, #88 Demaryius Thomas of the Denver Broncos.
When his Dallas CASA volunteer brought him not only the jersey but a signed football with a personal message from Thomas, Cody got very quiet.
“Oh my gosh, it’s from my favorite football player,” Cody said softly as he tried to hold back tears and read the encouraging words from a player he admired on television. The football read “Keep fighting young man. Stay strong.”
Cody is 16 and has been in foster care for a year. His advocate Ian says Cody is resilient and wants the most out of life, but that like many children in foster care he’s been labelled a “problem.” Ian wrote a letter to Demaryius Thomas and was shocked to receive a signed football in the mail a few weeks later. A generous supporter of Dallas CASA bought the jersey. “When Cody opened that gift, the smile on his face was the biggest I’ve ever seen,” Ian said.
For volunteer supervisor Jackie Davis, seeing Cody feel valued was what it was all about.
“We may not all be able to give a child a signed football from an NFL player, but we can give them meaningful experiences that can positively shape how they see the world. I have learned that sometimes advocacy is merely creating simple opportunities that remind children they are visible, important and that they matter. In this case, Demaryius Thomas did just that.”