Athletics

Men’s basketball team supports hurricane relief in Caribbean

February 21, 2018

In the aftermath of the deadly hurricane season in the Caribbean last fall, the Liberty University’s Men’s Basketball program took an active role in raising money for relief efforts.

The Flames opened their preseason by playing an exhibition game on Oct. 26 at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, with proceeds from ticket sales going to hurricane relief efforts. Liberty’s portion of the sales went directly to Ponce, Puerto Rico, hometown of sophomore guard Georgie Pacheco-Ortiz.

When Hurricane Irma devastated the U.S. Virgin Islands in September, Liberty opened its doors to host the preseason Paradise Jam, which is traditionally held in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. Liberty donated the $15,154 from ticket sales and more than 500 food and baby care items that were collected at the tournament to humanitarian relief efforts in the U.S. Virgin Islands. With permission from the NCAA and the Big South Conference, Liberty covered the travel expenses for Pacheco-Ortiz’s parents to fly from Puerto Rico to Lynchburg to watch their son play.

From Nov. 9-17, LU Send Now, Liberty’s disaster relief initiative, sent a team of eight students and two team leaders to Ponce to work alongside the Samaritan’s Purse International Disaster Assistance Response Team. The group assembled water filters, patched roofs, and worked at distribution centers in remote areas of Puerto Rico. LU Send Now sent another team there Feb. 10-17, partnering with the Southern Baptist Convention to assist with cleanup efforts and distribute food and water to residents.

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