PAWTUCKET, R.I. – The Brown University women's hockey team took the ice to skate with members of the Greater Providence Youth Hockey Association (GPYHA) during the group's Special Hockey session at Dennis Lynch Arena on Saturday. Members of the Bears squad guided the crew of nearly two dozen youth hockey players through skill instruction and an organized game.
"All of us had so much fun," said Brown senior co-captain Jennifer Nedow (Brockville, Ontario). "The atmosphere was so positive and supportive. It was incredible to see how excited the whole rink became when someone scored. We also had a great time getting to know the kids. When I asked one of the players how many goals he was going to score, he responded, 'I'll score a few, and then I'll pass so others can score too.' That comradery exemplifies what hockey is all about and sums up the day of fun, teamwork and compassion. Brown Hockey is so thankful to have been able to share a great day with RI Special Hockey and we hope to be invited back soon."
GPYHA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, member of the Rhode Island Amateur Hockey Association and an affiliate of USA Hockey. GPYHA offers instructional learn-to-skate programs and travel hockey teams, which provide children with an opportunity to experience the fun of playing hockey under the quality instruction of USA Hockey certified coaches. GPYHA's Special Needs Hockey Program, the only one of its kind in Rhode Island, offers learn to skate/instructional hockey for children age 4 to young adult with Down's syndrome, autism or any other developmental disability.
The program is open to any boy or girl who is physically able to play, but would be unable to participate in any other organized program due to his or her developmental disability.
For more information about the program, email RISpecialHockey@aol.com.
Photo credit: Raphael Bieber