CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Thursday was a special day for WTEN and parent company Nexstar Media Group. It is Founder’s Day when in 1996, Nexstar was founded. Nexstar employees across the nation celebrated by taking time out of their day to give back to the community.
Thursday, NEWS10 employees spread out to four different outreach and nonprofit organizations volunteering to support both the community and Nexstar’s mission — to embody community service through local news.
The team including NEWS10’s Mikhaela Singleton and Tim Drawbridge at Therapeutic Horses of Saratoga got our hands in the dirt and paint on our sleeves to set up a new outdoor therapy area and color a run-in shed. Many of these horses are relaxing after their glory days at the Saratoga Race Course. Now they provide care to those with disabilities, veterans with PTSD, as well as children and adults going through trauma.
“What they can do for people is provide comfort and laughter, talking about some tough situations, and they really open people up. It’s an incredible confidence booster! If you can learn how to manage a 12-hundred pound animal, you can do anything!” says Director of Equine Care Laura LaRue.
Over in Lansingburgh, NEWS10’s Lydia Kulbida and crew got things spic and span for the kids who come into the Boys and Girls Club — painting walls, trimming hedges, and cleaning off desks.
Volunteers in Schenectady, including NEWS10’s Stephanie Rivas, sorted through thousands of donations to Things of My Very Own. COVID-19 really ravaged the nonprofit that helps kids recover from abuse or neglect.
“It was a dramatic undertaking with the increase of clients and the limited staff and volunteers,” admits Founder Rayn Boncie.
We were happy to help lend a hand packaging clothes, toiletries, and other essentials, then send them off with waiting families.
Finally, Trishna Begam and Giuliana Bruno joined our team at the Regional Food Bank Patroon Land Farm. They broke out the trowels to plant healthy fruits and vegetables that will grow and feed families struggling to find their next meal.
All of these Capital Region organizations say they appreciated the extra hands on deck and NEWS10’s commitment to caring for our community.
“Having you all come in today so excited and ready to go, and I tell you you’re going to get dirty, you’re going to dig, and you’re like yes let’s do it. That makes me so happy, because I think having a sense of community is really important,” says LaRue.