Jaguars offensive tackle Ephraim Salaam hosted his fourth annual "Shop with a Jock" event recently at a Target store on the southside of Jacksonville. The event was designed to give some underprivileged children of Jacksonville a chance to go shopping for Christmas presents that many of them would not normally have an opportunity to enjoy. Each child received a $100 gift card courtesy of Salaam and his foundation. Some of his fellow offensive linemen were on hand to help out with the event as well.
"I love this event, it is great for the holiday season," said Salaam. "I enjoy looking at the kids' faces when the kids get to go shopping."
The 50 children who participated in the event were treated to a dinner provided by McDonalds. A clown was on hand to entertain as well.
"For these kids to have one day in their life that they can enjoy is what makes this event worth it for me," Salaam added.
The children selected an assortment of toys on their shopping spree. The toys included bicycles, GameBoys, Playstation 2 games, clothes, and more. One of the kids even picked out a gold watch and some perfume for his girlfriend. "I thought that was kind of cool," said Salaam.
Jaguars offensive tackle Derrick Fletcher participated in the event and was left with a wonderful impression. "Ephraim does such a terrific job with this every year," said Fletcher. "This event is such a great event for these kids. It really gets you in the holiday spirit."
Most of the children who took part in the event were from foster homes all around Jacksonville.