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Training Table is fantastic for area youth

After three weeks of trying to attend, I finally had the honor to attend Selma High School’s Training Table last week at Wallace Community College Selma.

I had heard great things about the Training Table and the example it was setting for our youth before I went, but I was still impressed by what I found.

For those that don’t know, the training table is a way to celebrate Saints’ football players that are making good choices and being a leader on and off the field. Each player lives by the Training Table slogan — “good, clean, pure.”

Thursday night was incredible.

The speaker, Brandon Wooten, could not have been better. He spoke passionately and from the heart.

Wooten was once a Selma High School football player so he could relate to the current batch of Saints’ players very well.

He spoke on some of the bad choices he made growing up, something we can all relate to.

He talked about being given a second chance, something we all deserve.

And then he talked about the importance of coming back to his hometown and trying to make a difference by opening up the Wooten Law Firm in Selma.

I write about football — and all the other Selma area sports — every week. I enjoy sports, as much, if not more, than anyone, but it’s not all about sports. It’s about getting our youth ready for what awaits them in the real world.

Being a part of a team helps our youth so much, because it teaches them core values. The training table is taking it to the next level.

Players are treated with a steak dinner while listening to a speaker fit to be a role model.

They meet judges, lawyers, school teachers, city workers and much, much more. The training table also honors a soldier each week.

Then, on Friday mornings, the players go to area elementary schools and open the car doors for students. It’s a great way to give the younger students a role model to look up to.

The elementary students will always remember the players opening their door for them and one day down the road, they’ll hope to earn the honor of being chosen for the training table.

Kudos to acting superintendent of education Larry DiChiara for getting it started.

The training table is building a foundation for the youth of Selma.