Suns News

Phoenix Suns Charities Community Giving Breaks Record

Organization gives nearly $1.1 million to local nonprofits with the announcement of annual grant recipients

PHOENIX – On the heels of announcing its annual $100,000 Playmaker Award to The Wellness Community, Phoenix Suns Charities announces its program grant recipients for 2009, awarding $1,099,665 to 119 different charitable organizations throughout Arizona.

The announcement marks the most successful season in Phoenix Suns Charities 20-year history of funding community projects for children and families. After reaching the million dollar mark in giving for the first time last season, the organization this year has donated nearly $1.1 million dollars in grants, program support and scholarships to various charities throughout Arizona. In addition to the annual grant process, funds are distributed through a variety of programs including SunStudent Scholarships, Suns Nite Hoops and directed donations.

“To once again top the one million dollars mark in community support, especially in this economy and in this fundraising environment, should be a tremendous source of pride for everyone involved,” said Tom Ambrose, executive director of Phoenix Suns Charities. “Special thanks goes to our major donors, our board members and of course, our Suns players who helped make it happen.”

Non-profit organizations applied for funding through the foundation’s grant application process. This year, program grants ranged from $500 to $100,000 with an average disbursement of $8,928.

In addition, the annual $100,000 Playmaker Award grant, funded by Phoenix Suns Charities’ 36 Playmaker donors, will go to The Wellness Community, which provides educational and psychosocial support programs for people living with cancer. The grant will go towards The Wellness Community’s renovation of its Teen and Family Center. The renovation will include the creation of the Phoenix Suns Charities Exercise and Wellness Room, providing a safe environment for teens and adults to participate in effective exercise programming at no cost. Construction is expected to begin in August 2009, with classes beginning in February 2010 and an estimated 4,000 participants by the end of 2010.

The Phoenix Suns Charities Exercise and Wellness Room will serve as a springboard for The Wellness Community’s innovative new focus on exercise and the tremendous physical, mental and emotional impact it has on people, especially teenagers, living with cancer.

Phoenix Suns Charities utilizes the unique resources of the Suns organization to raise funds which benefit non-profit organizations that assist the needs of children and families. Since its inception in 1988, Phoenix Suns Charities and the Phoenix Suns have donated more than nine million dollars to Arizona organizations, helping children and families across the state.