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Updated: Wednesday, 23 Jan 2013, 8:43 AM CST
Published : Tuesday, 22 Jan 2013, 5:50 PM CST
GREEN BAY - On Friday nights in the fall most high school football players can be found on the gridiron.
But it might surprise you where the Green Bay East High School Red Devils were the next day, and what they did together.
The pictures show the football players raking leaves. They're doing so for people who struggle with that chore. And the young men say they enjoyed the experience.
"I think that it really shows us the value of helping others in need," said Chris Frelich, sophomore football player.
Frelich was one of the students handy with a rake. His coach says the players look forward to helping.
"We talk a lot about what we can do for the community, and how we can give back, not just wins and losses. So they're usually gung ho. They love to do it," said Brian Nast, East High School football coach.
Other teams in the school have committed to helping, as well. In the fall, the volleyball players helped raise money for breast cancer awareness.
"It just makes you feel good and you know you're helping someone who really needs it," said Elizabeth Grunwald, sophomore.
"We focus so much on winning, winning, winning. We practice every day, two to three hours a day. It's okay to take a step back and look at the big picture. That there's way more out there than just winning," said Heidi Kieffer, East High School volleyball coach.
The program is called "East High School Supports," and it was started to encourage team unity, help with character development, and to show the students how to be better leaders. And those messages seem to be sinking in with the students.
"It just opens our eyes to everything that is going on in the world. It just makes us bigger people," said Alissa Bethke, senior tennis player.
The tennis team raised money during its season, to help in the fight against cancer.
"I think it's good for kids to realize the world is bigger than just what's in front of their face. There are others who are dealing with things everyday. And it makes them feel good to make a difference for other people, too," said Lacey Melco, East High School tennis coach.
The girls and boys basketball teams are focusing on homelessness in the city. This past week, the teams held fundraisers for a local shelter in Green Bay. They ran through the stands, collecting money, held raffles, and in general, raised awareness.
So as the athletic teams at East try and score points when they play...they're also learning how to win, in life.