Nov. 19, 2012
MADISON, Wis. -- As Hurricane Sandy ripped through the northeast United States, Hannah Berner took notice. Seeing her home state flooded and powerless, Berner decided that she had to do something. The senior, and Brooklyn, N.Y., native joined the rest of the Wisconsin women's tennis team to sponsor "Serving for Sandy", a fundraiser that netted over $600 for hurricane victims on Sunday.
The money raised will go to the Red Hook Initiative, to provide food, temporary housing, health benefits and financial assistance to those affected by the storm.
"It was very difficult," Berner said. "It was heartbreaking to see the city that never sleeps lose power, transportation, homes, and lives. I decided I wanted to show my support, even from a distance, by getting the tennis team together to raise some money to help the victims."
The senior was joined by the rest of the women's tennis team, including head coach Brian Fleishman and assistant coach Mira Radu, as well as Wisconsin women's tennis alumni Angela Chupa and Alaina Trgovich. Alexander Kokorev, Petr Satral and Oskar Wikberg of the Wisconsin men's tennis team also stopped by to participate in the fundraiser.
A mixture of young kids, college students and adults attended the event at the Nielsen Tennis Stadium, where they were able to compete in tennis drills run by the Badgers, as well as play games with the players. The women's tennis team baked goodies for the fundraiser, and also raffled off a tennis racket.
Overall, the fundraiser was a huge success, and continued a Badger tradition of giving back to the community--be it in Madison or New York.
After seeing his players execute such a successful fundraiser, Fleishman was incredibly impressed.
"I am so proud of this team to come together and do something to help the hurricane victims on the east coast," Fleishman said. "We raised some money to help out, but the thought is just as important. It just goes to show that the Badgers are there for people in need."