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On Thursday, the Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation, joined by players and staff from the Washington Wizards and Washington Mystics, made stops at three Southeast D.C. locations for their annual Family-To-Family holiday gift delivery event.
To kick off the season of giving, the group delivered and opened gifts with local, underserved families at Martha’s Table, Hendley Elementary School and Bright Beginnings.
“It’s always important (to give back around the holidays),” Wizards head coach Scott Brooks said. “It’s the most important gift you can give. This is the time of year where you can really have a lot of impact and put a lot of happy faces on families. We’re doing our part. Monumental Sports, the Mystics, the Wizards and the Go-Go – we believe in it. It’s from the heart and I’m proud to be a part of it.”
At each stop, Wizards players Thomas Bryant, Rui Hachimura, Ish Smith and Moritz Wagner and Mystics players Elena Delle Donne and Tianna Hawkins toted bags and boxes of toys into the groups of eager families.
“This is something I have been a part of for four years now,” Brooks said. “It’s always fun to see their faces and their smiles. Seeing our players interact with the families is so cool. Being a part of it, being able to watch from afar and being able to be involved is a cool experience. We look forward to it every year.”
“This is what the holidays are all about,” Delle Donne said. “It’s about giving back. This community has been so special to us, especially with the Mystics. We feel like they had a huge impact in our championship season. To be here, to give back, to see the smiles on the kids’ faces as they’re ripping their toys open. It’s a great day.”
Wizards general manager Tommy Sheppard, Mystics head coach and general manager Mike Thibault and Monumental Basketball vice president of player engagement John Thompson III helped kids open their presents at all three locations. The gifts included winter boots and clothing, stuffed animals, bikes, video game systems and more – even laptop computers for some of the older children at Martha’s Table with college on the horizon.
Earlier this month, Monumental Sports & Entertainment announced Martha’s Table as its social impact community partner for the month of December.
“We are so excited that Monumental has decided to partner with us,” said Kim R. Ford, President and CEO of Martha’s Table. “We have had some families who have had a rough year. I even saw some parents crying and saying, ‘I don’t know why I am so emotional, but this is so amazing.’ That’s really the energy – just great appreciation. We’re really just so happy that Martha’s Table families could benefit from this wonderful act of generosity.”