Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett and Marshawn Lynch give back in Haiti

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GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 23: Defensive end Michael Bennett #72 of the Seattle Seahawks high fives Cliff Avril #56 after a defensive stop against the Arizona Cardinals during the second half of the NFL game at the University of Phoenix Stadium on October 23, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. The Cardinals and Seahawks tied 6-6. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Seattle Seahawks defensive end Cliff Avril is carrying on a tradition he began last season.

Avril, along with defensive end Michael Bennett and retired running back Marshawn Lynch, are in Haiti this week building schools for at-risk youth, hosting a camp and creating homes to endure natural disasters.

Following the catastrophe of Hurricane Matthew in 2016, Avril pledged to build a home in Haiti for every sack he recorded. He tallied 11.5 with the team last year.

This is Avril’s second trip to Haiti with his Seahawks teammates. Avril’s family emigrated from Haiti in the 1980s and prior to last year’s visit, it had been over a decade since Avril returned to the country.

He has been active on both Twitter and Instagram detailing his travels for #AvrilHaiti2017, including one today where he and teammate Bennett visited God’s Plan Orphanage.

Bennett was one of the Seahawks starters who was noted as absent during yesterday’s offseason program workouts. His whereabouts are now known.

Last season, it was Marshawn Lynch who gave Avril the hunch to travel to Haiti and begin his own school building project with the Cliff Avril Family Foundation. Avril told The Seattle Times his story.

Knowing that I’m Haitian, he actually put me in contact with the people he’s been working with who go around the world and build schools. He put me in contact with them and told me if there was anything I needed as far as building a school or his support, he was all in. And he has definitely been all in. He has been to both trips that my foundation has taken to Haiti to build a school, and he has also pledged to help me build a classroom for the school. We were just casually talking about our foundations one day and I said, ‘One day I’d like to build a school.’ When the opportunity presented itself with him, the first person he thought of was me. He introduced me, and for him to even think about me was pretty cool. We’ll go on these trips and we’ll talk to the people handling the school, and he wanders off and is playing football and soccer with the kids.

So naturally, Avril showcased a photo of Lynch, who is speculated to make his return to the NFL and join the Oakland Raiders, in his natural habitat playing soccer with the kids.

The Seahawks brotherhood is real. To learn more about Avril, Lynch and Bennett’s efforts in Haiti, follow the hashtag #AvrilHaiti2017.

 

By: | April 19, 2017

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