Many athletes give to charity, often in large sums. But rarely do athletes offer donations like the one Cole Hamels and his wife Heidi announced this week.
Per a press release, Cole and Heidi will donate their 2,000-square-foot Southern-Missouri mansion (along with 100 acres of land) to Camp Barnabas, a day camp for children with special needs and chronic illnesses. The lakeside property is listed on Realtor.com at $9,418,400.
“There are tons of amazing charities in Southwest Missouri. Out of all of these, Barnabas really pulled on our heartstrings,” Cole Hamels said in the release. “Seeing the faces, hearing the laughter, reading the stories of the kids they serve; there is truly nothing like it. Barnabas makes dreams come true, and we felt called to help them in a big way.”
Cole and Heidi Hamels reportedly began building the house when Cole still pitched for the Philadelphia Phillies. When the former World Series MVP was traded to the Texas Rangers in 2015, the couple decided to move to Texas instead. Instead of selling their mansion, as about 99.9 percent of people would have done, they decided to simply give theirs away.
According to its website, Camp Barnabas provides “Christian camping experiences to people with special needs and chronic illnesses, along with their siblings.” The 22-year-old organization currently has locations in Purdy, Missouri and Shell Knob, Missouri. Camp Barnabas says the Hamels’ donation is the largest in the camp’s history.
Now THAT is a Christmas gift.