Christmas Day 2022

Denver Nuggets share holiday cheer with children at Mount Saint Vincent

The Nuggets spent time with kids who have been affected by trauma.

The Denver Nuggets visited the holiday party at Mount Saint Vincent on Monday.

Members of the Denver Nuggets stopped in on Monday to hang out with young people from Mount Saint Vincent, which offers education, therapy and care for children who have suffered through trauma.

Breanna Graves, clinical manager at Mount Saint Vincent, said she was pleased to have the players visit, noting that the youths there “were so excited.”

“I think it gives the kids a sense of hope and just a sense that they can do whatever they want to in life,” Graves said. “It’s really inspiring for them to meet and get to hang out with the players.”

There were three organized activities during the day – coloring, shooting around on the court and story time.

Nuggets center DeAndre Jordan, tongue firmly in cheek, expressed his pride at being able to color within the lines. He said he and Ish Smith had lost a shooting contest to the children, playfully blaming the point guard.

“It was great. Being able to have some time with the kids before the holidays was amazing,” Jordan said. “It was a really fun day.”

Ish Smith and DeAndre Jordan share a moment with children at Mount Saint Vincent as part of their holiday party.

Forward Zeke Nnaji said he enjoyed his time, noting the change of pace that comes with engaging and entertaining children.

“I think it was fun, being able to hang out with the kids and do little activities with them,” Nnaji said. “Overall, it was really enjoyable. The kids are pretty rambunctious, and they don’t really have a good attention span, but being able to think on your toes and just go with the flow is what’s fun about it too.”

Bones Hyland, Ish Smith, Bruce Brown, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Christian Braun were also part of the festivities.

Bruce Brown and Christian Braun chat with kids during the holiday party.

Smith, KCP and Braun also dropped in at the Johnson Boys & Girls Club for their seasonal party earlier in the week.

Graves said she hoped the players came away from the event with a deeper connection to the city, noting the bond residents have with the team, as well as affection for the young people there.

“There’s a big community in Denver that cares about them,” Graves said. 

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope was part of the Nuggets crew that visited Mount Saint Vincent.

Originally founded as an orphanage in 1883 by the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth, Kansas, Mount Saint Vincent offers support for young people who have suffered through abuse, face a behavioral disorder, dealt with neglect and/or lived through traumatic events, officials said on their website.

Through “gentle, non-threatening approaches,” including art and movement therapy, the organization seeks to “help children feel safe as they learn to trust, form relationships, self-regulate, and reintegrate into their communities,” officials said.

“When children come to Mount Saint Vincent for pediatric behavioral healthcare, they have endured heartbreak and tragedy,” officials said. “With treatment, patience and nurturing care, our mission is as relevant today as it was 140 years ago—to help them heal beyond trauma into a healthy and hopeful future.”