CHIP VAUGHN & NATALIA
Although he's gone through one of the worsy tragedies that can befall any parent, the loss of a child, Chip Vaughn, a former Wake Forest defensive back, is not allowing what happened to stop him from helping others. Vaughn lost his six-day old daughter, Natalia, last month to a rare genetic disease called Trisomy 18. To raise money and bring awareness to the disease, Vaughn, who played for the Saints and the Colts and is currently a free agent, will hold the Hungry and Humble Youth Football Camp at BB&T Field in North Carolina on June 23. The camp is free and open to children in first through eighth grades. To register go to: ChipVaughn.eventbrite.com. Donations will be accepted for The Chip Vaughn Hungry for Life Foundation, which raises money for research on Trisomy 18.
Vaughn recently sat down to talk about the camp.
Q: Why are you running a football camp?
A: I am running a football camp because I believe that it is important to give kids an opportunity to sharpen their football skills and encourage them to follow their dreams. I think camps are a fun way for kids to be inspired and empowered in the activities that they love, by athletes who have lived through it. I also want to be able to give back to Wake Forest and its surrounding community, seeing as though my time at Wake was such a pivotal moment in my life.
Q: What do the kids do at The Hungry and Humble Youth Football Camp?
A: At my camp kids will be taught the basic fundamentals of football, which should be like an enhanced skills revision for most pee wee teams. They will participate in position drills, group activities, and a short team scrimmage at the end.
Q: Who else will be on hand to help you run the camp (WF players/NFL players?)
A: There will be several Wake Alumni and Current NFL players on hand to assist with coaching the campers. Among them are Aaron Curry, Stanley Arnoux, Alphonso Smith, Brandon Ghee, Willie Parker, Jyles Tucker, Lardarius Webb, Myron Lewis, Ahmad Bradshaw, Kyle Wilbur, Eric King, Fred Robbins, Chantz McClinic, Al Alfalava, Kenny Moore, Andre Brown.
Q: You aren’t charging the campers but you are raising money and taking donations, where does that money go?
A: Any money that is raised through my camp will go towards The Chip Vaughn Hungry for Life Foundation. This foundation was created in an effort to raise money for Trisomy 18 research and to assist families that have a child with Trisomy 18 or other special needs. Trisomy 18 is a condition which is caused by a chromosomal defect occurring in about 1 out of every 10,000 babies conceived. A baby with this condition has 3 number 18 chromosomes instead of the normal 2. The developmental issues caused by Trisomy 18 are associated with medical complications that are potentially more life-threatening during the early days, months, and years of life.
Q: There has been recent news that football is dangerous, what are you thoughts?
A: I believe that football is only a dangerous game when there is a lack of fundamentals on the field. When the correct principles and skills are applied, football can teach kids how to work together as a team, how to respect and rely on others, and how to be mentally tough. It also offers many underprivileged children an opportunity to better their lives and their futures. The main point of my camp is to teach kids these important fundamentals that can help minimize their risks and maximize their careers.