Stanley Cup playoffs become an open door to help those in need

By June 3, 2009

Canada (MNN) — You may never have heard of a Goat-O-Meter. It is the result a Canadian hockey fan's enthusiasm for the game and his generous compassion.

Joel Nagtegaal and his friends of Langley, British Columbia, decided to buy a goat for a needy family every time the Vancouver Canucks won in the Stanley Cup playoff. Through Christian Reformed
World Relief Committee
the goats would be purchased from communities overseas and then donated to a family in that area. 

The Canucks playoff run ended on May 11, but the "Goat Canucks Goat" project kept going. The group's original goal was 16 goats. With the help of a donated Web site and some coverage on a local radio station in Canada, the goal has been surpassed by far.

At first, the Goat-O-Meter was set at 100 with high hopes of a deep run into the playoffs. When it exceeded the 100-mark, despite the Canucks loss, goats came spilling over the top of the meter. So the meter was set to 500 "for fun," wrote
Nagtegaal in his blog.  

His most recent report was a Twitter post to the blog on May 29 indicating that they’ve reached 1008 goats- $25,200 worth of donations.

Nagtegaal playfully reports that any typos in his posts are due to the missing keys on his keyboard from a swinging incident after the Canucks final loss. However, he writes, "It makes the Canucks' loss a LITTLE easier to take when I wake up each morning and see the goat-o-meter on the rise. "

The cost of a single goat is $25. A portion of that covers the cost of vaccinating the animal
and teaching families animal husbandry skills. The goats will be used for meat or milk. In either case, they are a testament to God's provision and the care of other Christians.

Nagtegaal is considering making the project an annual event. For him, good works and hockey go together. Since he was a young boy, his father told him that he should always welcome other kids to play hockey. If they didn't have a stick, give them one, his dad generously advised.

If you'd like to donate a goat, click here.

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