Washington Capitals Charities, Washington Mystics Foundation and Wizards Care Charities have been combined into the newly formed Monumental Sports & Entertainment (MSE) Foundation.
Created in 2013, Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation supports the charitable efforts of the Washington Capitals, Mystics and Wizards. As these teams now fall under the Monumental Sports & Entertainment umbrella, aligning their causes and unifying their giving enables us to have the greatest impact on the community.
MSE Foundation is committed to the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area and focuses on the following five pillars to maximize its impact on the community:
- Education and scholarship
- Hunger and homelessness
- Military and veterans' affairs
- Pediatric health and fitness
- Youth basketball and hockey
Recognizing the community as our most important asset, MSE Foundation looks forward to continuing to creating programs that are designed to give back to the very community that supports our teams. In 2013 Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation, along with the Leonsis Foundation, will donate more than $1.5 million to local charities. Through MSE Foundation we pledge to continue investing our time and resources and serving as a positive influence and contributor in our community, and we hope to inspire others to do the same.
If you would like to make a tax deductible donation to Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation, please click the button below. Once you click the button you will be directed to our secure PayPal donations page.
For more information on Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation, please contact Elizabeth Wodatch, executive director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Home Game Auctions: The Wizards will host sports memorabilia auctions featuring autographed and game-worn items at 15 home games during the 2012-13 season. The auctions will take place at section 103/104 on the main concourse with all proceeds benefiting Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation.
Family-to-Family: 2012 marked the second-straight year that all three Monumental Sports & Entertainment sports teams collaborated on the Family-to-Family program, which the Wizards created 16 years ago. The program allows the Caps, Mystics and Wizards to “adopt” families in need who are nominated by local schools and nonprofit organizations. This past holiday season more than 20 families were adopted by the teams’ charities, individual players and staff members.
The Family-to-Family program kicked off in November when wives and girlfriends of Wizards and Capitals players and coaches shopped for 82 adults and children adopted through the program. Participants included Bree Anderson, fiancée of Wizards forward Trevor Ariza, Patrice Cleary, wife of Wizards strength and conditioning coach Drew Cleary, April Dixon, girlfriend of Wizards forward Trevor Booker, Lauren Hilario, wife of Wizards center Nene, Eva Kodouskova, fiancée of Wizards forward Jan Vesely, Ilana Nunn Okafor, wife of Wizards center Emeka Okafor, Joni Sichting, wife of Wizards assistant coach Jerry Sichting, Courtney Webster, wife of forward Martell Webster and Kathy Wittman, wife of Wizards head coach Randy Wittman along with Monika Hybnerova, girlfriend of Capitals goaltender Michal Neuvirth and Karin Johansson, wife of Capitals assistant coach Calle Johansson. Clothing, educational items and toys were purchased for the children, while clothing and household items along with grocery gift cards were purchased for the parents and guardians. By the end of the day a full-sized JK Moving Services truck was filled with more than $25,000 in clothing, bikes, toys and presents for the families.
All of the adopted families were invited to a holiday party at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Dec. 16. The children and families in attendance enjoyed an afternoon of refreshments, games and fun with team mascots G-Wiz and Slapshot, Wizard Girls and Red Rockers, who were all on hand to help spread holiday cheer to the deserving families. The children were able to play basketball, skate on the Capitals ice, interact with Santa and have their faces painted. At the end of the event, the families left with bags overflowing with holiday gifts from the Caps, Wizards and Mystics.
To conclude the 2012 Family-to-Family program, Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld, Wizards players Bradley Beal, Jordan Crawford, Nene, Chris Singleton, John Wall and Martell Webster, Mystics player Matee Ajavon, Wizards mascot G-Wiz and Wizard Girls delivered presents and spread holiday cheer to five underserved families in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 17.
Beal, Crawford, Nene, Singleton, Wall and Webster, along with Grunfeld, Ajavon, G-Wiz and the Wizard Girls, MSE staff members and local media boarded a bus at Verizon Center loaded with gifts for the families. The players spent the afternoon delivering presents to the Curtis, Flores and Short families in northeast Washington and Yates-Glenn and Young families in southeast Washington.
The families selected for participation in the 2012 Family-to-Family program were nominated by local schools and nonprofit organizations including The Salvation Army National Capital Area Command, The Women’s Wing Organization, Catholic Charities, Browne Education Campus, Bright Beginnings, Shaw Community and Building Hope.
Everybody Wins! DC: During the 2011-12 school year 20 staff members from Monumental Sports & Entertainment (MSE) participated in the Everybody Wins! DC Power Lunch program, a literacy and mentoring program based in select elementary schools in the Washington metropolitan area. The goal of Power Lunch is to encourage children’s interest in reading, expand their opportunities for success and facilitate meaningful volunteer contributions.
Through the Power Lunch program, MSE staff members – including employees from the Washington Capitals, Mystics, Wizards and Verizon Center – were paired with students at Garrison Elementary School in Washington, D.C., and Key Elementary School in Arlington, Va. Each week during the school year, MSE staff members took time out of their day to visit with their mentees, spending time reading and sharing conversation during the lunch hour. The program concluded in May with year-end celebrations with each partner school during which all of the mentors and mentees were recognized for their hard work and dedication to the Power Lunch program.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington: MSE Foundation and the Washington Wizards have partnered with Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington (BGCGW), providing a $25,000 grant to the D.C.-based nonprofit in 2013. This money will be used to increase participation and promote basketball on a grassroots level in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. The MSE Foundation grant will fund scholarships for at-risk and underserved youth, girls’ player clinics, coaches clinics and The Monumental Tournament of Champions, a Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington organizational-wide basketball tournament.
Junior Achievement: Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation is proud to serve as a storefront sponsor at Junior Achievement Finance Park in Fairfax, Va., where local students are able to build financial skills for life. Junior Achievement of Greater Washington provides students a real-world perspective of finance – one that is current, practical and easy to understand. Taking more than 15,000 middle school students each year into the world of business, Junior Achievement Finance Park is a month-long economics education program that introduces participants to personal financial planning and career exploration.
The Junior Achievement Finance Park experience begins in the classroom. The four-week classroom curriculum culminates with a day at Junior Achievement Finance Park, where students immerse themselves in a reality-based decision-making process that addresses aspects of individual and family budgeting, including housing, transportation, food, utilities, health care, investments, philanthropy and banking. The on-site activities are designed to allow students the opportunity to put into action what they have learned in the classroom and to understand the basic steps of maintaining a realistic personal budget. Two weeks of classroom follow-up allows students to use their new financial knowledge to explore career options and to set goals for their future.
MSE Staff Service Projects: During the summer of 2012 Monumental Sports & Entertainment employees participated in three service projects. The Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation partnered on a project with USO-Metro in July, D.C. Central Kitchen in August and Rebuilding Together Arlington/Fairfax/Falls Church in September.
Bullets alumni Bob Dandridge, Jack Marin and Larry Stewart and Capitals Hall-of-Fame alumnus Rod Langway participated alongside Monumental Sports & Entertainment staff members, Wizard Girls, Caps mascot Slapshot and USO-Metro volunteers in an Operation USO Care Package event in July at the USO Warehouse. Dandridge, Marin, Stewart, Langway, the Wizards Girls, Slapshot and MSE employees volunteered with a mix of civilians, active duty military members and military spouses and children to assemble military family care packages that service members who are deploying will send home to their families.
In August Langway joined MSE staff members for morning meal prep at DC Central Kitchen. Throughout the session the Monumental Sports & Entertainment employees transformed 3,000 pounds of leftover food into 5,000 meals for 100 area homeless shelters, transitional homes and nonprofit organizations in Washington, D.C.
For the National Day of Service and Remembrance on Sept. 11, Dandridge and Langway volunteered with Monumental Sports & Entertainment staff members, Arlington County first responders and volunteers from Rebuilding Together Arlington/Fairfax/Falls Church to prepare Arlington County’s Emergency Winter Shelter for its opening day. Volunteers cleaned and painted rooms throughout the building, installed bookshelves in the library and added mirrors and clothes hooks in the bathrooms. They also placed additional shelving and clothes bars to store donated clothing and assembled welcome kits for 100 homeless men and women.
Through these MSE Foundation staff service projects, 120 employees volunteered 500 hours of their time to local charities during the summer of 2012.