ST. LOUIS — Indianapolis Colts cornerback Pierre Desir is utilizing his platform to do everything he can to give back to his community and pay it forward.
In 2019, Desir was nominated for the NFL Walter Payton Man of the Year Award, and for a good reason. The award recognizes an NFL player for his excellence on and off the field.
Desir was born in Haiti and moved to St. Louis when he was 4 years old. He grew up in the St. Louis area and attended Francis Howell Central High School. He continued his football career at Lindenwood before graduating and playing professionally.
From conducting free youth football camps in St. Louis to planning school shoe distribution opportunities, Desir has been a light in the community.
“I’ve been in the community just doing everything that I can just to show my appreciation,” Desir said. “Even if I’m living in a different city. I was in Cleveland. I was in San Diego. I was a couple of different other places, but I always tried to give back just because the community meant so much to me. And they helped me grow up to the man I am today. So, I just wanted to do my part and help out with whatever I can.”
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, he knew he wanted to take action.
“During this time, a lot of schools are out,” Desir said. “So, I was talking with my agency. I was trying to think of what ways I could help, ‘cause I know the importance of those meals for a lot of those children. That’s part of their main meals, so I was trying to find out what organizations I could help. We decided to pick the St. Louis Area Foodbank and just chatted with them to see what ways we could help them. We were able to work it out and provide food for over 20,000 families. So, just doing my part in whatever way I can.”
Desir pledged a donation that will provide 20,000 meals for those in need across the St. Louis area. He said the decision to do this was simple.
“This is a very tough time,” Desir said. “When you go to grocery stores there’s not a lot of supplies, there’s not much food. So, especially with people in certain areas. They're not able to just go out and buy certain materials and certain food items. I know that times right now are very difficult, and I’m just using my platform to help.”
The St. Louis Area Foodbank is still accepting online donations at stlfoodbank.org.