Growing up in an eastern Baltimore area neighborhood, Thaddeus (pictured) joined Heroes Helping Heroes as a junior in high school.
Thaddeus wholeheartedly committed himself to our youth development program – launching himself into volunteer community service and discovering he had a true gift for encouraging pediatric patients at Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital. He spent hours volunteering at the hospital, reading to the children, playing games with them, doing crafts and brightening their day. One young patient was confined to his room due to a medical condition. Thaddeus visited the boy regularly and took him under his wing.
A Dream Takes Shape
As Thaddeus progressed through our program, a dream formed in his mind: he wanted to become a doctor and help sick children. With the support of Heroes Helping Heroes, Thaddeus worked hard and graduated from high school. He then went on to graduate with honors from Penn State University (PSU) with a degree in pre-med. At PSU, Thaddeus continued to volunteer at the local pediatric hospital.
Thaddeus is currently attending Virginia Tech medical school with the goal of becoming an Orthopedic surgeon.
Today, Thaddeus credits Heroes Helping Heroes with planting the dream in his heart – and giving him the support, guidance and encouragement to excel in his studies and fulfill his calling to help children in need.
"I am writing today to inform you of the Heroes Helping Heroes program. I have tried other programs that were not up to the standards of the HHH program. The program not only focuses on basketball, but on community service, academics and even provides rides to and from games. This program has given us players countless opportunities to show our talent to scouts. This program is also showing us how to become better men in life in general. Overall, this program is amazing and provides all the essentials to start building my future. I would recommend this program to anyone interested in signing up."
- Josh B., Program Participant
"My son has been a member of this program since last fall, and I see it as a very positive program not only for him, but also for the other boys involved. The boys have had an opportunity to grow and learn in many ways. HHH is very conscious of their academic achievements and requires them to focus on that on a daily basis. HHH stresses working hard in the classroom and on the court. I have seen growth in my son as he has worked with this program for the last 5 months. He has always been a good student but it has been good for him to get continued reinforcement from someone other than his parents. His work ethic has improved tremendously. He is starting to understand that even though he enjoys basketball and has some natural ability, he must work very hard at it if he wants to improve. He can take that attitude into so many other areas in life that will help him be successful. Overall, the Heroes Helping Heroes program has been a very positive experience for my son. I hope it is something that will continue in the future."
- Andrew C., Participant's Father
"My son has been an active member of the Heroes Helping Heroes program since November 2008. He participates in hospital visits, life skills classes and is on the 11-13 year olds youth basketball team. Before HHH, he had some challenges with socialization as well as in his classwork, he still has challenges, but the program has helped him to strive to do better and make better choices and it increases every day. HHH has helped my son in many ways and are helping him with lessons that he will surely take with him beyond this program. He still has a ways to go, but with the help of this program and the staff involved, I feel secure in knowing that he is part of an organization that will help him develop strong characteristics to make him a strong young man. I recommend this program to any parent or parents that want their children to have a character building experience...while they have FUN!!"
- Cheryl C., Participant's Mother
"He has always loved to play basketball. We had tried other programs, but this program seems to be the best one by far. He's been in the program for almost a year. The Heroes program concentrates on academics as well as basketball. What I like most about the program is that he earns his community hours for school. He volunteers at children hospitals. They have incentive programs for the kids. They can get free sneakers and earn money for reading books. What I also like is when my son gets older and stays in the program, the Heroes staff will help him with getting into schools. They will help him with resumes for jobs. The program teaches them about the responsibilities and values they'll need when they become adults and start their own lives. I would highly recommend this program."
- Nancy M., Participant's Mother