by Staff Writer

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TAMPA, FL  The Dunedin Pirates visited Hope Children's Home today. The home is a Christian orphanage which houses dozens of children as young as newborns to as old as eighteen years old. They found their way to Hope Children's Home because they were abandoned, abused, neglected and/or orphaned children.  

The children were just returning from being evacuated due to Hurricane Irma, which went through Florida last weekend. Not all of the children were back yet, but that didn't postpone the visit.
Pirates Director of Community Outreach Karen Bleichner coordinated the visit with Hope's Volunteer Coordinator Chris Tagliarini .

"The children were so sweet. You could see they really enjoyed the visit by the Pirates players", Bleichner said. "We plan to visit again in the future". As part of their visit, the team brought donations of food and supplies.  
"I had a really good time with the kids today. It was a nice way for us to give back to the community", Pirates Quarterback Worthy Jackson said.
After the players and children got to know each other, they picked teams for a tag football game. Many of the children who were there took part and had fun. At the end of visit, Pirates President Andy Villamarzo presented a football to the children and gave each of them a Dunedin Pirates t-shirt.
Hope Children's Home relies fully on donations, and they receive no government funding. They could use fresh fruits and vegetables, kitchen supplies, paper towels, toilet paper, diapers, health and beauty products, gently used children's clothing, furniture and other items. Contact Hope Children's Home directly to schedule a drop off of items or visit their website www.hopechildrenshome.org

And if anyone was wondering... Team Villamarzo beat Team Jackson 28-14. 

Thanks to Bobby Simms, Jeremy Wheeler, Roosevelt Austin, Worthy Jackson, Bobby Fenton, Michael Wineberger, Andy Villamarzo, Steve Korossy, and Karen Bleichner for representing the Dunedin Pirates in such a caring way.