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Bearcats lend a helping hand to Hurricane Harvey victims

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Natural disasters bring out the best in humanity as people come together to help those in need.  As Houston continues to deal with the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey, here in the Southern Tier, the BU Bearcats basketball teams are doing their part to help.

Linda Cimino and Tommy Dempsey, in response to requests on Twitter from University of Houston men's basketball coach Kelvin Sampson and women's coach Ronald Hughey, have started gathering clothing, toys, and toiletries, among other things to ship to the University of Houston to be handed out to those in need.  The Bearcats basketball coaches, players, and staff have all taken part in the initiative. 

For one of the newest Bearcats, Binghamton High School Grad Jodi-Marie Ramil, the chance to help those affected by flooding hits very close to home.

"I was here when we had the flood in 2011 and then before then," Ramil says.  "My grandma was really affected by the 2011 flood.  We would always go over to my grandma's house on Sundays and I just saw what the devastation did to her and to this community.  To have the opportunity to be able to give back to another community that is 100 times worse than when the flood hit here is something that I'm blessed to do."

"The basketball community as a whole came together through the power of social media.  It's probably a great example of how Twitter can be used in a positive way," Cimino says.  "All the coaches across the country got together, so Coach Dempsey and I decided that we would take some collections up with our staff and our team to send some stuff down to Houston.  We've had an overwhelming response.  We know how blessed we are here and the fact that we can help other people and our neighbors in Texas, it means a lot to us to be able to help them."