NASHVILLE, TENN. (Aug. 2, 2021) – Ingram Charities (Ingram), Nashville Soccer Club (Nashville SC), CAA ICON and Mortenson | Messer JV (MMJV) have joined forces to provide a new soccer field, soccer team equipment, playground equipment and gardening and landscape assistance to Napier Elementary School as part of their ongoing commitment to the community.
Ingram, Nashville SC, CAA ICON and MMJV are partners in the construction and development of the Nashville SC Stadium, the largest soccer specific stadium in the United States. They all share the common mission of investing in the communities where they live and work, which is why they have pledged to extend their work together to Napier Elementary School.
The support for Napier Elementary is made possible through a partnership with PENCIL, Nashville’s premier organization linking community resources to Metro Nashville Public Schools (MNPS).
“Our outdoor space received an amazing beautification upgrade due to the kindness and generosity from Ingram, Nashville SC, CAA ICON and MMJV,” said Napier Elementary School Principal, Dr. Watechia Lawless. “The improvements helped establish a park-like setting for us to share with the wider community. It also gave our students access to soccer, a sport that is not traditionally played by families that live in the Napier/Sudekum community.
“The students in the Promising Scholars program have already participated in a four-week soccer league that was facilitated by Nashville SC professional instructors and Napier faculty, and coached by members of the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department. This experience has been transformative for our students, allowing them another outlet to explore their gifts and talents, receive mentorship and support and widen the world of possibilities for all involved.”
Landscape improvements at Napier Elementary include painting permanent playground games like hopscotch, four square and chess; repainting benches, signs and the gazebo; and power washing the Napier Monument Wall.
The work included creating a soccer field for the school, donating and installing soccer goals/football uprights and providing support for Napier’s first-ever soccer team with Nashville SC youth kits and equipment.
On July 31, 2021, a Back-to-School celebration was held to welcome students and to dedicate the new soccer field and campus improvements. The Napier Elementary School soccer team made the inaugural first kick on the field. Guests included Jacki Artis from PENCIL, Principal of Napier Elementary School Dr. Watechia Lawless, Councilman Freddie O’Connell, Metro Nashville Public Schools Board Chair Christiane Buggs and Shannon Burgess from BODYARMOR, along with Napier community members and Nashville SC stadium construction partners. Food for the event was generously donated by Central BBQ.
At the event, Nashville SC hosted its IMPACT Soccer program, a pop-up community program dedicated to providing children from underserved communities with access to soccer. In partnership with BODYARMOR, they also gifted 300 backpacks filled with school supplies to Napier Elementary School students and presented a check to Kickin’ It 615 from BODYARMOR’s Play It Forward Program at Kroger – which donated 5 cents for every BODYARMOR product sold between 5/26/21 and 7/20/21 (capped at $5,000 total) – to provide 40 young athletes the opportunity to participate in a local soccer league.
“This event was the culmination of a lot of hard work by everyone at Napier Elementary School, PENCIL and BODYARMOR, alongside the Nashville SC Stadium construction partners,” said Ingram Industries Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Mary Cavarra.
She continued, “It has been a privilege to work with the South Nashville community throughout the process of building the new stadium and through this project at Napier Elementary. Our hope is that the new soccer field and playground improvements will facilitate a love of play and recreation for Napier students and the entire neighborhood long into the future.”
“As the new Nashville SC Stadium takes shape, we are excited for South Nashville to become a hub for soccer, in the city and beyond,” said Nashville SC Senior Director of Community Engagement, Brandon Hill. “Providing support for the first-ever Napier Elementary School soccer team and field has been an incredibly rewarding project for our club and we look forward to continuing our partnership with the school to help students reach their full potential moving forward.”
MMJV is the project manager for the Nashville SC Stadium, with Mortenson running its own Do Something Good community impact program and Messer’s longstanding commitment to investing in community organizations and economic inclusion.
“Beyond the work we’re doing at the stadium, we take pride in immersing ourselves in the local community through stewardship,” said MMJV Senior Project Manager, Tom Clark. “Our team appreciates the opportunity to make an impact at Napier Elementary.”
CAA ICON, Nashville SC’s representative overseeing design and construction for the stadium, has a longstanding philanthropic partnership with PENCIL through CAA’s Nashville based office, and working with Napier Elementary is an extension of the work they’re already doing to support local schools.
“Being able to give back to Nashville’s public schools is a natural fit with our company values to make a difference in the communities where we live and work,” said CAA ICON Project Director, Kellen DeCoursey. “We are thrilled to continue the support of PENCIL started by our CAA Nashville colleagues and Ingram Industries.”
Ingram, Nashville SC, CAA and MMJV have plans to continue working with Napier Elementary to finish repairing masonry monuments at the playground entrance and to spread new mulch in the garden.
“We’ve been fortunate to have the support of these partners for years and working with them to make Napier Elementary a fantastic place for its students has been an amazing experience,” said PENCIL President & CEO Angie Adams. “When companies of this stature make supporting our public schools a priority, it has a huge impact on our city.”