PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – Peoria native and Pittsburgh Steelers offensive lineman Kendrick Green returned home to spreading encouragement to local children.

Wednesday, Green visited Kiefer School in Peoria.

The Steeler held a question and answer discussion with students, took pictures, and signed autographs. He also spoke with students about achieving goals and perseverance.

The president/CEO of Children’s Home, Matt George, said Green reached out to him about the opportunity.

“He’s just a hero to many, and it gives these kids a chance to dream, and that’s what’s really cool about this whole situation,” George said.

As a child, Green said he remembered other noteworthy Peorians giving back to the community, and he wanted to contribute as well.

“People like that came by when I was growing up. Going to school, people would come talk with us and tell us about just chasing your dreams and aspirations, and I figured why not be the same way,” Green said.

Green attended Peoria High and Hines Primary School. He recently completed his rookie year in the NFL.