There are bigger things in life than tennis – Katie Swan
British tennis star Katie Swan said “there are so many bigger things in life” after her family received overwhelming responses from vulnerable people they have helped through the coronavirus crisis.
Swan is currently living in Kansas in the United States and has been helping the local community with her family.
Her mum set up an organisation and has been delivering care packages.
The garage at their home has become a storage space for essential food.
“My mum has been getting all the care packages together, organising everything into smaller sections so when the people who are helping to deliver these, it’s all set up and organised,” 21-year-old Swan told BBC Sport.
“We’re keeping our social distance and staying hygienic throughout the whole process. It’s been amazing to see how my mum’s pulled this all off. Just to see the impact it’s had on the community is so nice.”
On Sunday, they had delivered care packages to more than 135 families and Swan says her mum has received letters and phone calls from those they have helped.
“[My mum] had a woman crying down the phone to her because she just couldn’t believe how much they’ve done,” said Swan.
“You just don’t realise how much something so simple can impact their lives because they can’t support themselves at the minute.”
Katie Swan’s family have transformed their garage into a storage place for essential food and care packages
No professional tennis tournaments will be played anywhere in the world until at least 20 April but Swan says she is one of the “lucky” ones because Kansas is yet to go into lockdown.
“I’ve been able to hit and I’m really lucky I’ve been able to do that because I’m definitely one of the few players in the world who is able to play tennis at the minute,” said the British number six.
“It’s a shame we’re not able to compete but it’s made we realise there are so many bigger things in life and there are people that we have to take care of.
“I’m in a privileged position at the moment because I come from a family who can support each other but there are so many people out there who can’t do that and it’s really showing during this time.
“It’s amazing that my mum was able to set this up to help people in any way we can and seeing the impact it’s had on them has been really rewarding for us.”
Swan added that “the most important thing at the moment is the health and safety of everyone in the world” amid growing concerns that Wimbledon will be postponed this summer.
“There’s nothing we can do. We just have to do our best and follow government guidelines – just stay hygienic, do our best for other people and tennis comes after all of that,” said Swan.
Katie Swan’s family has delivered care packages to 135 families in Kansas