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NLL and Players announce Partnership with Right to Play

02/26/2012, 12:40am EST
By NLL.com

NLL and Players to help Right to Play launch ‘Lacrosse for Development’ program in First Nations Communities this summer

The National Lacrosse League announced Right To Play as the official designated joint-charity of the NLL and the Professional Lacrosse Players’ Association on Saturday at the All-Star game in Buffalo, N.Y. (Photo Credit: Bill Wippert)

The National Lacrosse League (NLL) has announced ‘Right To Play’ as the official designated joint-charity of the NLL and the Professional Lacrosse Players’ Association (PLPA). The announcement was made today during the NLL All-Star Game Fan Fest at First Niagara Center in Buffalo. NLL player ambassadors for Right To Play, including Chris McElroy, Tracey Kelusky and Mike Accursi, joined Right to Play and league representatives in making the announcement.

The organizations will work together to design and develop a ‘Lacrosse For Development’ program to be implemented in Ontario, in addition to helping raise $10,000 for the humanitarian organization.

“We are excited to partner with Right To Play and join them on their mission to improve the lives of children and families who are in need”, said NLL Commissioner George Daniel. “I’d like to thank our players, who are bringing a lot of energy and enthusiasm to this cause.”

“The NLL Players’ are happy to be part of a charity that we can truly call our own”, said Rochester Knighthawks player Mike Accursi, the team’s PLPA Representative and a Right To Play Athlete Ambassador. “To work with such a great organization like Right To Play and to incorporate lacrosse into their programming is truly an honor for us”.

Right To Play’s ‘Promoting Life-skills in Aboriginal Youth (PLAY) program, will benefit from the new Lacrosse For Development program. Throughout First Nations communities in Ontario, NLL players will help deliver skill-based instruction to children, youth and coaches. In addition, this program will inspire and motivate First Nation children and youth to connect to the strong culture and tradition of Lacrosse.

This program has the potential to impact over 500 children and youth in First Nations in its first year, and inspire a lifelong commitment to lacrosse.

As the leading international humanitarian and development organization, Right To Play uses the transformative power of sport and play to build essential life skills in children, thereby driving social change in communities worldwide affected by war, poverty and disease.

“Right To Play is thrilled to be partnering with the National Lacrosse League to design and deliver a Lacrosse program in First Nation Communities”, said Robert Witchel, Right To Play National Director, Canada . “The NLL players driving this initiative will help create positive change in the lives of the children and youth participating.”

NLL teams and players are jump-starting the fundraising efforts by donating game worn jerseys and other collectibles for an upcoming online auction to raise money for Right to Play.  Details regarding the auction will be announced soon.

Right To Play is supported by an international roster of over 350 Athlete Ambassadors, including NLL players Chris McElroy, Andrew McBride, Dan Dawson, Mike Accursi, Ryan Cousins, and Tracey Kelusky. As role models, these athletes inspire children, raise awareness and promote fundraising opportunities for Right To Play’s programs around the world.

For more information, visit the Right To Play website by clicking here.

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