Alzner, Backstrom, Carlson, Green, Holtby and King Volunteer with The Salvation Army’s Grate Patrol program
/ Washington Capitals
ARLINGTON, Va. – Six Washington Capitals players – Karl Alzner, Nicklas Backstrom, John Carlson, Mike Green, Braden Holtby and D.J. King – volunteered with The Salvation Army’s Grate Patrol program on Monday, Nov. 15. The six Washington Capitals players were joined by Mix 107.3’s Chilli Amar and Comcast SportsNet’s Jill Sorenson while they delivered sandwiches, beef stew, bread, hot chocolate, water and cookies to the homeless in eight locations in Washington, D.C.
This is the second consecutive year that Backstrom and Amar have participated in this event. The Grate Patrol van started at The Salvation Army’s Harbor Light facility at 6:45 p.m. and stopped at eight locations in the northwest part of Washington, D.C. The Caps players and their fellow volunteers delivered the food while talking to the homeless about their everyday struggles of living on the streets. Click here to watch the CSNWashington.com video of the event.
“Last year this event made a big impact on me and I wanted to do it again this year. I also wanted to get my teammates involved,” said Backstrom, who is the spokesman for the Capitals’ canned food drive at their Nov. 20 game.
“It’s great for us to come out here and help these people out any way we can, just help the community out,” said King.
“Just to see the people standing in line waiting for food was kind of a reality check,” said Alzner.
“Coming from a small community to see this first-hand is kind of amazing and makes you want to help out any way you can,” said Holtby.
“It’s is a great cause, and Nicky asked if we wanted to come out and we all said yes,” said Green.
The Grate Patrol program started in 1985 and operates 365 days a year with service to more than 1,000 individuals each month. The Grate Patrol serves between 100 to 120 individuals per night and has served more than 33,100 meals annually. Originally the program offered meals alone, but today an outreach coordinator helps the homeless get back on their feet.
Major Steve Morris from the National Capital Area Command for The Salvation Army also helped out. The Salvation Army is one of the Capital Area Food Bank’s partnering agencies and the beneficiary of the Washington Capitals’ canned food drive on Nov. 20 as the Capitals take on the Philadelphia Flyers. As a Capitals Area Food Bank partner agency The Salvation Army receives access to reclaimed and donated products, fresh produce and emergency food commodities from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. By securing food from the food bank, the partner agencies are able to redirect funds they would normally spend on food to other socio-economic services for their clients.
The Washington Capitals would like to encourage fans to volunteer with the Grate Patrol program by either preparing or delivering meals any day of the week. Go to www.SalArmyDC.org, Facebook: www.facebook.com/salarmydc or Twitter: www.twitter.com/salarmydc for more information.