The Thunderbirds, hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by Ak-Chin Indian Community, raised a record $10,147,441 for local charities through proceeds raised from the 2017 tournament, Thunderbirds Big Chief Andy Markham announced at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. This is the highest single-year charitable donation in tournament history, breaking last year’s record total of $9.3 million and the first time eclipsing $10 million in tournament history. It also marks the third-consecutive year breaking the tournament record for charitable dollars raised in a single year. More

Thunderbirds Charity Spotlight – Phoenix Art Museum Teen Engagement Initiative

There have been a number of changes at the Phoenix Art Museum under the leadership of Amanda Cruz and her team, starting with the Teen Engagement Initiative, a program that offers a community alternative  for safe programming for teenagers and a place to hang out and express themselves.  Thunderbirds Charities has been instrumental in this program from the beginning, and are proud to see all of the great things happening at the Phoenix Art Museum. More

Thunderbirds Charities Awards $50,000 to One Step Beyond, Inc for Catering Expansion

Thunderbird Charities, the charitable giving arm of the Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open presented by Ak-Chin Indian Community recently awarded One Step Beyond, Inc. $50,000 grant to support the expansion of their Catering Program, allowing for an increase in employment opportunities for its participants. More

Fall 2017

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Thunderbirds Charities Donates $80,000 to Desert Voices Toddler Room

Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of the Thunderbirds - hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open - recently donated $80,000 to Desert Voices in support of The Toddler Room.   More


This month’s Charity spotlight focuses on Girls on the Run, a program for girls in grades 3rd - 8th that helps to inspire participants to recognize their inner strength and celebrate what makes them one of a kind.  Trained coaches lead small teams through the research-based curricula which includes dynamic discussions, activities and running games.   More

Thunderbirds Charities Gives Valley of the Sun YMCA Coolest Summer Ever with $250,000 Grant

Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of The Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by The Ak-Chin Indian Community – announced a $250,000 contribution to the Valley of the Sun YMCA to support the Y’s Water Safety, Day Camp, Afterschool and Resident Camp Quality Improvement and Outreach Enhancements. More

Thunderbirds Charities Wraps Up Spring Funding Cycle, Awards More Than $2.9 Million to 55 Valley Charities

Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of the Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix– awarded more than $2.9 million in grants to 55 Valley charities during its spring funding cycle. Most notably, Thunderbirds Charities granted $300,000 to UMOM New Day Centers, $250,000 to VOS YMCA, $150,000 to Special Olympics Arizona (SOAZ) and $80,000 to Desert Voices Oral Learning Center. More


The Thunderbirds have had a long-lasting partnership with Girl Scouts — Arizona Cactus-Pine (GSACPC) and have supported many of the organization’s wonderful projects and initiatives.  Most recently, The Thunderbirds and Thunderbirds Charities donated $125,000 to support Family Engagement Efforts in the South Phoenix community at the Leadership Center for Girls and Women at South Mountain. More


Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of The Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by The Ak-Chin Indian Community – announced a $10,000 donation to Duet: Partners in Health and Aging to support its one-of-a-kind Grandparents Raising Grandchildren program. More

Thunderbirds Donate $375,000 to Barrow Neurological Institute for Mobile Stroke Unit

The Thunderbirds were recently on hand at the Barrow Neurological Institute for the unveiling of the new Barrow Emergency Stroke Treatment Unit, a state-of-the-art mobile emergency room that focuses on treating stroke victims and is the first of its kind in the United States (and only one of 10 in the nation) to operate around the clock in a city with a population greater than 1 million. More

Thunderbirds Charities Awards $100,000 Grant to Arizona Science Center to Support Stem in Metro Phoenix Schools

PHOENIX, Ariz. (March 6, 2017) –Arizona Science Center is on a mission to bring an increased focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics – the subjects commonly referred to as STEM – to teachers, students and families across Arizona through its innovative, signature STEM Extravaganza program. Thunderbirds Charities awarded Arizona Science Center $100,000 in grant funding to help provide customized learning to 3,500 students and 400 teachers from Metro Phoenix schools through the delivery of STEM Extravaganza programs at eight K–5 schools in 2017. More

Thunderbirds Charities Grants $280,000 for Fresh Start Women’s Foundation Resource Center Enhancements

Fresh Start Women’s Foundation was recently awarded a $280,000 grant from   Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of the Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by The Ak-Chin Indian Community, to support and enhance Fresh Start’s Jewell McFarland Lewis Fresh Start Women’s Resource Center. More


PHOENIX – Chicanos Por La Causa Early Childhood Development (CPLC ECD) Program was able to make much needed improvements to their center serving residents in south central Phoenix thanks to a $150,000 grant from Thunderbirds Charities – the civic arm of The Thunderbirds, hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by The Ak-Chin Indian Community. More

Brigitte Dunne Captures the 2016 Joanne Winter Arizona Silver Belle Championship in Sudden Death Playoff

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – The final round of the 46th Joanne Winter Arizona Silver Belle came down to the wire with Brigitte Dunne, 19, of Camarillo Calif., and Haley Moore, 18, of Escondido, Calif. finishing with an exciting sudden death playoff. Dunne birdied the first hole to clinch the championship with a final score of 210 (-6) for the three-day championship to win the Kachina award. Brigitte follows in the footsteps of fellow SMU teammate, Kenzie Wright, who claimed the Championship in 2015. “I played solid all day even with an unplayable lie and hitting into the water. I just kept telling myself to come back fighting. I was able to make 6 birdies so I was putting really well,” said Dunne. Dunne, in her fourth Silver Belle appearance, said she keeps coming back to the Silver Belle because the tournament is at a perfect time between seasons and is an excellent way to say see the results of her practice and she promises to be back again in 2017 when the Silver Belle will be held at Talking Stick again. “The best part of the match was the playoff. Haley was playing such great golf – we both were. To […] More

Thunderbirds Charities Donates $25,000 to Miracle League of Arizona

  The Miracle League of Arizona has a mission to provide a fun, safe and successful baseball experience for individuals with special needs. Although the fully accessible stadium has just one location (North Scottsdale), families travel from all across Maricopa county to enjoy a day of fun at the baseball park. Volunteers pair up with athletes and provide friendship and support during the games as an enjoyable and rewarding volunteer service activity. Opening their gates in 2011 with just two teams and a handful of participants, MLAZ now has 18 teams and plays four days a week to accommodate its 250-plus athletes. They recently added a youth competitive league for children between the ages of 5 and 13 that are ready to practice at an improved skill and knowledge level of the game with outs and strikes.  MLAZ takes pride in offering this opportunity free of charge to the families of these special need athletes who have to cover numbers of therapy and medical costs.  Thunderbirds Charities has been supporting MLAZ from the beginning and is honored to donate $25,000 towards the ever expanding program. More

Raising the Roof at Phoenix Children’s Hospital

Several Thunderbirds were on hand to help celebrate Phoenix Children’s new emergency department’s “Topping Out” ceremony, a tradition held when the last beam is placed atop a structure during its construction. This was the final steel beam to be hoisted to the top of Arizona’s new Emergency Department, only Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center and the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders – a much needed expansion project that was helped by a $500,000 donation from Thunderbirds Charities in June of 2015. Construction workers, hospital staff members and partners within the community gathered as the clinking of iron stopped and the ceremony began. Signatures and well wishes covered the beam as some very official patients joined the construction team and helped guide the very last beam in place. An evergreen tree topped the steel frame, a tradition symbolizing good luck for future occupants and continued growth. The tradition of a Topping Out commemorates not only the completion of a project, but celebrates the process of building. While the grand opening festivities at the end of a building’s construction are meant to introduce the structure to the public, the topping out ceremony honors the accomplishment of the construction crews. Phoenix Children’s […] More