Wildcats Lend A Hand

Sept. 15, 2008

The cast members of HGTV had better beware: the Arizona women's basketball team showed off their carpentry skills on Thursday, February 11 at the Building Freedom Day event, a Habitat for Humanity-sponsored event.

Members of the Wildcats picked up hard hats, hammers and nails and went to work on one of four homes being constructed in the Corazon del Pueblo project. Head coach Niya Butts, a board member of the local Habitat for Humanity organization, could not have been happier to have her team involved in the project.

'For me, this day means that we truly know what it means to give back to the community,' said Butts, whose hometown of Americus, Georgia is also the home of the original Habitat for Humanity chapter. 'We know that there's nothing greater than the gift of giving and we're going to try and do that throughout our program and as long as I am the head coach of the Arizona women's basketball program.'

The Building Freedom Day project was launched in memory of the 9/11 attacks and drew more than 300 volunteers to the 600 block of West Lester Street. One of the local residents on hand, Terri Figueroa, will receive a brand new home when the project is completed.

'It gives me tremendous pleasure and pride to see the girls out here working hard. They're not complaining, they're taking instruction and they're working. I'm really happy to see that and it makes a huge difference for the people who will benefit from their efforts.'

The local community will have its first chance to see Butts and her first Wildcat squad in exhibition action at the McKale Center on Tuesday, November 4 against Panhandle State (Tex.) with tip-off scheduled for 7:00 p.m.

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