LANCERS GIVE BACK TO HURRICANE VICTIMS IN NEW ORLEANS

WINDSOR, Ont. - The Windsor Lancers men's hockey team will hit the ice in 2009 with a renewed appreciation of all that life has to offer after a visit to New Orleans during their holiday break.

Over the Christmas holidays, the Lancers traveled to New Orleans to assist in a building project that affected areas devastated by Hurricane Katrina and most recently Hurricane Gustav.

Arriving on Boxing Day, the Lancers shared their time and work efforts between Our Lady of the Sea Catholic Elementary school and the Habitat for Humanity housing build.

Considered one of the hardest hit areas by Hurricane Katrina, the school is in a relatively poor community and has received the least help from outside agencies. The team's work included painting classrooms, replacing countless numbers of broken windows, removing soiled ceiling tiles, and disconnecting five heavy duty air conditioning units and hauling them away.

The school's Pastor is hoping money will be made available within the next three months to begin total restoration of this school.

The last half of their visit was spent in Harvey, La. working for Habitat for Humanity. The Lancers laid sod for nine homes, built fences, decks and completed a variety of renovation tasks for the houses.

Working with Habitat for Humanity was particularly rewarding for the team as the work being done was the final touches needed on the homes prior to the home owners moving back in.

"Our trip to New Orleans and working with Habitat for Humanity has been one of the most gratifying experiences I have ever participated in," said Lancer captain Kyle Nishizaki. "To help out so many people in need, and to see the smiles that spread across their faces as they saw their houses being finished is something I will always remember."

For Lancer head coach Kevin Hamlin, the experience had a similar effect.

"This trip surpassed our expectations as our team gained a greater perspective on life and the challenges that others are dealing with," commented Coach Hamlin. "We worked on new homes with others next door that had green water marks as a high as the eaves-troughs. To think families were forced to leave everything behind and lost everything was quite humbling."

"I am very proud of our team's efforts while in New Orleans. Our players have come home with a new sense of what is important in life."

Source: Lancers Athletics
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