Do you need a Husker fix and/or autograph this weekend in Omaha while helping an important children’s cause?
Former Nebraska football stars, Brandon Reilly and Josh Banderas, will be appearing at Project Harmony’s donation event on Sunday afternoon.
Reilly, a current Detroit Lion, and Banderas, a 2016 All-Big 10 linebacker, will be at the nonprofit’s offices at 119th and Q St., talking to donors and signing autographs as part of ‘National Be Someone Day—July 21.’
Banderas will be there from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. and Reilly will be at Project Harmony from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. covering the two hours of the event.
Project Harmony was founded in Omaha in 1996 by several community leaders to create a better system of protection for abused and neglected children. They fight child abuse with multiple state and federal agencies by getting kids out of unhealthy situations and then providing resources for the children. Today they are one of the largest child advocacy centers in the nation.
As part of their children-centered mission, Project Harmony is spearheading ‘National Be Someone Day’ on July 21 to help end child abuse and bring communities together through education and awareness.
“At Project Harmony, we believe that all children are someone,” Project Harmony’s Director of Communications Angela Roeber said. “And, all adults can be someone to a child.”
“On National Be Someone Day, we are encouraging people to take the pledge to be the person to make a difference in a child’s life. Most importantly, be someone prepared to report when a child trusts you enough to tell you they’ve been hurt.”
Child abuse is a growing concern around the country. When Project Harmony opened its doors over 20 years ago, they were one of only 35 such centers, and now there are over 850 similar organizations. The need for so many centers is in direct relation to some unsettling stats, Roeber said.
Every 10 seconds a report of child abuse is made, more than 90% of sexually abused children are abused by someone known to the child or family and approximately five children die every day because of child abuse.
Sunday’s donation event at Project Harmony is for everyday items for children, or they will accept monetary donations. You can see Project Harmony’s Wish List on their web site, which includes new clothing, school supplies, stuffed animals, toys, blankets and personal items.
Also, the former players will have a Husker helmet and jersey for donors and kids to see and take a picture with if so desired. (Maybe a youngster wants to put them on as well for a pic to commemorate the occasion?)
Learn more at www.ProjectHarmony.com and use #BeSomeoneDay to share on social media.
1pm to 2pm--Josh Banderas, Salt Lake Stallions, Linebacker (AAF)
Josh Banderas recently retired from professional football as a member of the Salt Lake Stallions of the now defunct AAF after playing at Nebraska from 2013-16.
He was a three-year starter at Nebraska and ranks in the top 20 all-time in tackles. His senior year he was a team captain and made All-Big 10 with nearly 100 tackles.
2pm to 3pm--Brandon Reilly, Detroit Lions, Wide Receiver (NFL)
Brandon Reilly is a former Husker star and now with the Detroit Lions of the NFL and reports to preseason training camp Tuesday, July 23. Prior to the Lions, he was with the Buffalo Bills organization for two years.
As a Husker from 2013-16, he was a two-year starter and made Academic All-Big Ten. Reilly had a breakout junior year with 40 receptions and almost 800 yards receiving. Also, he made a memorable game-winning touchdown catch versus Top 10 Michigan State in 2015 as well.