Thunderbirds Charities Supports Community Alliance Against Family Abuse

Community Alliance Against Family Abuse (CAAFA) has received a $10,000 grant from Thunderbirds Charities. The grant will be used to provide music therapy for children impacted by domestic and sexual violence.  CAAFA operates a domestic and sexual violence crisis shelter, where, in 2020, they expect to serve 25 children from Maricopa County. For the second year in a row, the funding from Thunderbirds Charities will allow children at CAAFA to participate in music therapy at Higher Octave Healing in Tempe. “CAAFA provides trauma-informed care to adults and their children in our Safe House. While they stay with us, we can help them begin to heal and learn coping skills that they can carry for the rest of their lives,” CAAFA Executive Director, Ray Villa said. “Music therapy is a key feature of our children’s programming, and we are thankful for support from the Thunderbirds Charities support, which enables us to continue this important service.” Studies show that music therapy can help children who have experienced horrific events overcome their post-traumatic stress. CAAFA parents who attend sessions with their children also learn how to engage with them in new ways, and make new memories that will hopefully overshadow the darker ones. […] More

In the Community – Native American Connections

As part of their In the Community Conversations, today Thunderbirds’ 2021 Tournament Chairman Scott Jenkins held a virtual chat with Dede Devine, President and CEO of Native American Connections to talk about the current challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, identify the immediate needs of the organization and find out how the community at large can help support the mission of Native American Connections. Since 1972, Native American Connections has been changing lives, strengthening families, and building healthy communities. They began as a small grassroots organization operating one program for Native American men in recovery from substance abuse. Today, Native American Connections owns and operates 21 sites throughout Central Phoenix, offering a continuum of affordable housing, behavioral health, and community development services which touch and change the lives of over 10,000 individuals and families each year. “We said two things when COVID started. No one will be evicted and no one will go hungry,” said Devine. “We began really helping our residents understand about rental assistance and utility assistance and how they can apply for federal and state programs that can help them.” Native American Connections also has focused heavily on food distribution and making sure their guests have adequate nourishment […] More

Thunderbirds Charities Awards $50,000 to Assistance League®of Phoenix

Thunderbirds Charities recently awarded the Assistance League® of Phoenix $50,000 grant to support their Operation School Bell. The Delivering Dreams Bus is the mobile unit of Operation School Bell®, the signature program of Assistance League® of Phoenix, and serves over 8,500 students each school year both through the bus and the satellite dressing center located in Sunnyslope. “Thunderbirds Charities has been a longstanding partner of ours,” said Aimee Runyon, Chief Executive Officer, Assistance League® of Phoenix. “Their generous donation provided much needed support to fill our new buses with shoes & clothing. We are thrilled to add the Thunderbirds Charities to our two new buses, as one of our greatest supporters.” The Assistance League of Phoenix recently launched two new buses sponsored with Rotary 100/BHHS Legacy Foundation and Fiesta Bowl Charities/BHHS Legacy Foundation. Thunderbird Charities helped support the clothing & shoes to fill these buses. Assistance League of Phoenix partners with more than 90 Title I schools throughout the year. Each school can select up to 100 children who qualify for the program (students on the free or reduced lunch program). Once on board the Delivering Dream Bus, students work with volunteers to select correct sizes. Each student receives a […] More

Grassroots Parent Engagement Group Receives Grant from Thunderbirds Charities

Stand for Children Leadership Center, a parent engagement group, is pleased to announce they have recently received a $25,000 grant from Thunderbirds. Stand for Children Leadership Center is a leadership development and training organization. They train ordinary people to be effective citizen leaders capable of solving problems facing children, both locally and statewide, by convincing elected officials and voters to invest in and reform vital children’s programs. They provide parents and others concerned about children’s issues with tools to achieve long-lasting improvements for children by joining together in a unified, grassroots voice. “We are honored to receive this award,” Stand for Children Executive Director Rebecca Gau said. “It will enable us to have a greater impact by reaching and empowering more parents. It is our aim to identify and address early literacy issues through our Every Child Reads initiative, and we are excited about the increased opportunities available for the families we serve thanks to this award.” To reach even more families, Stand for Children Leadership Center launched Every Child Reads (ECR), a research-based family engagement program that empowers parents with the skills and knowledge they need to support their child’s learning and prepare them to succeed after graduation. Currently, […] More

Thunderbirds Charities Awards Arizona Housing Inc Comforts of Home Project $50,000

Since 1995, Arizona Housing Inc (AHI) has worked toward its mission to assist individuals and families in attaining self-sufficiency through the provision of dignified, comprehensive housing and services. AHI serves extremely low income, disadvantaged individuals and families; 85% of all tenants are living at or below 30% of area median income ($15,300 or less), and the majority are behaviorally/physically disabled, elderly, veterans, or families with children. Thunderbirds Charities support for the Comforts of Home Project has provided assistance in supplying furniture, fixtures and equipment to 90 individuals at their newly refurbished Steele Commons site and will be used to increase healthy engagement of families and prosocial development of children through play at their North 17 site by enhancing the current outdoor space through installation of a shade structure for the playground and the purchase of indoor/outdoor equipment, toys and games. AHI has a unique long history and expertise in serving extremely low-income individuals with additional challenges such as serious mental illness, physical disabilities, and substance abuse issues. They seek the most difficult to serve with the goal of providing them with a home, supportive services, and a community of support. Through their community-building strategies, AHI helps this diverse and vulnerable […] More

Thunderbirds Charities Grant Supports Kinship Foster Families

Thunderbird Charities has recently awarded $25,000 to Aid to Adoption of Special Kids (AASK) to improve outcomes for foster children who have been removed from their home and placed with a kinship caregiver. More than 5,500 of the nearly 14,000 children in Arizona’s foster care system are placed with relatives – grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings. These kinship foster families take immediate placement of children, but don’t get full state support until they become licensed foster parents – a process that can take six months or longer. The goal of the AASK Kinship Care Program is to support kinship foster families as they care for the children of relatives, with a special focus on the first six months of care as the entire family responds to the crisis of children being brought into foster care. This grant makes it possible for AASK to provide support to families before they become licensed. AASK has a unit dedicated to the unique needs of kinship foster families. Each family is assigned a family support specialist who serves as a guide for dealing with the Arizona Department of Child Safety, the courts, the schools and other organizations involved in the life of a child […] More

Act One Receives $50,000 from Thunderbirds Charities to Support Transportation for Arts Field Trips

Thunderbirds Charities recently awarded a $50,000 grant to Act One to support transportation costs for field trips. Act One works with schools that serve a high percentage of students from households that qualify for free or reduced lunch and are part of the Federal Title 1 Schoolwide program. “Act One’s biggest field trip expense is transportation to get students to the arts venues,” said Juliet Martin, vice president of strategies and programs. “Thunderbirds Charities is such an important community partner, and the gift helps Act One meet the incredible demand from schools for arts field trips.” Act One reimburses schools for the cost of using district buses or books and pays for charted buses if district buses are unavailable. Act One also pays the arts organizations for tickets to attend field trips. Each school’s only cost for Act One field trips is a $1 per participant program partnership fee. Thunderbirds Charities is proud to support Act One’s goal to serve students whose families and schools are unlikely to have the means to bring them on educational arts field trips. Act One This grant is part of the Fall 2019 cycle. View a list of all Recent Grantees. More

Be a Leader Foundation Receives $50,000 from Thunderbirds Charities

The Be A Leader Foundation is proud to announce that it has been awarded a $50,000 grant to help support its PIPELINE of College Access, Postsecondary Success and Postsecondary Transition programs which serve over 8,000 students a year. “We are honored to partner with The Thunderbirds again this year,” said Melissa Trujillo, President/CEO and Co-Founder of the Be A Leader Foundation. “This investment will continue to allow us to provide thousands of Arizona students with the tools, resources and mentoring to pursue a higher education.” The Be A Leader Foundation’s (BALF) mission is to increase the number of students who are prepared for and succeed in higher education by empowering them with tools, leadership skills and consistent support, transforming lives and creating life-long opportunities for success. Their vision is a community where all students have the opportunity to succeed in higher education and have the skills and resources to ensure personal success. BALF believes that Arizona’s future is linked to the state’s ability to produce a robust educated workforce; college graduates earn, on average, one and a half times more than high school graduates, adding more revenue back into the economy. “We’re thrilled and so proud to give these grants […] More

In the Community – Special Olympics Arizona

As part of our In the Community Conversations, Thunderbirds’ Big Chief Tim Woods checked in with CEO of Special Olympics Arizona (SOAZ) Jamie Heckerman via virtual conference call to discuss the current challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, rally community support and communicate immediate and essential needs so SOAZ can continue to serve the community at large. For people with intellectual disabilities, Special Olympics Arizona is often the only place where they have an opportunity to participate in their communities and develop belief in themselves. For athletes, Special Olympics sports provide a gateway to empowerment, competence, acceptance and joy. The lessons learned in Special Olympics also impact their life skills. Sports training enhances focus and gives participants a structure for learning important lessons about perseverance, endurance and setting goals. Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of The Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open – has been a long-time supporter of SOAZ, recently providing a $1 million donation to fund the completion of their new State Competitions Distribution and Training Center. “Normally this is our very busy time of year. We have our summer games that are usually right around the corner. Unfortunately, this year that’s not happening,” said […] More

In the Community – ICAN

As part of the In the Community Conversations, we shift to Thunderbirds’ 2021 Assistant Tournament Chairman Michael Golding checking in with Shelby Peterson of ICAN via virtual conference call to talk about the challenges of dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic and discussing ways to support ICAN so they can continue to serve the local youth in our community. ICAN is a free, family-centered youth service in the East Valley that helps to combat substance abuse, gang involvement and juvenile delinquency. ICAN goes beyond being just an after-school program for those at-risk by working with youth on the critical skills they need to be productive and responsible members of the community by empowering them through personal and academic success. “The COVID-19 crisis has caused us to have low attendance for the first time in our 32-year history,” said Peterson. “We’ve had fewer kids coming to the program than ever before, so we are really pressed to deliver our mission in a way that isn’t group based. What we’ve had to do is pivot and start developing curriculum that we’re now putting out to the community with family friendly activities packed all in a two-gallon Ziploc bag.” Peterson stated the biggest thing […] More

Children’s Developmental Center Receives $50,000 from Thunderbirds Charities

The Children’s Developmental Center at Southwest Human Development recently received a $50,000 grant from Thunderbirds Charities to support intake coordination services that help families avoid visits to multiple specialists and assists them in navigating an often fragmented and significantly under-resourced service delivery system. The Children’s Developmental Center provides a wide range of disabilities programs and services including assistive technology at its ADAPT Shop, autism services using the DIRFloortime® model, team developmental assessments, feeding services, psychology and counseling, therapy services and more. “We are so grateful for our long-lasting relationship with Thunderbirds Charities and are grateful to have a partner in supporting Arizona’s youngest children and their families,” says Jake Adams, chief development officer of Southwest Human Development. “The Children’s Developmental Center is one of the only places where low-and-middle-income families can get comprehensive developmental evaluations.” Thunderbirds Charities is proud to support Southwest Human Development and their efforts to improve the lives of individuals living with disabilities. Children’s Developmental Center at Southwest Human Development This grant is part of the Fall 2019 cycle. View a list of all Recent Grantees. More

Thunderbirds Charities Awards $100,000 to Circle the City

Circle the City, a community health organization dedicated to providing high quality, holistic healthcare to people experiencing homelessness in Maricopa County, was awarded a $100,000 grant from Thunderbirds Charities to support the purchase of a third mobile medical clinic and a portable generator. The grant helps expand Circle the City’s outreach to people facing homelessness in the north Phoenix and Sunnyslope area. The portable generator will provide power at Circle the City’s two medical respite centers in the event of severe weather resulting in power outages. “We’re incredibly grateful for the continued support of Thunderbirds Charities,” added Ross. “Their contributions support our vision of healthier communities without homelessness. ” Transportation is a significant barrier for individuals facing homelessness and needing medical attention, so they often rely on emergency responders and hospital emergency departments for routine, non-emergent healthcare. Mobile medical outreach enables Circle the City to meet and treat individuals where they are – on the streets, at public parks, partner agencies and in other pockets of high-density homelessness. Circle the City believes it must meet patients ‘where they are,’ in a literal sense, but also without judgment or bias, embracing dignity and respect for all patients. The mobile medical clinic […] More

Esperança Receives $25,000 Grant from Thunderbirds Charities

Esperança, a Phoenix-based nonprofit whose mission is to improve health and restore hope both locally and globally, is the proud recipient of a $25,000 grant from Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of The Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open. This grant will be used to further support Esperança’s health literacy programs for at-risk, low-income Latino children, adults, and seniors in the Phoenix area. These health literacy programs include Salud con Sabor Latino (Health with a Latin Flavor), Diabetes Empowerment Education Program (DEEP), Platicas (30-minute talks on various health topics), and oral health education for all ages. The grant is projected to serve almost 4,000 participants. “In the local communities where we serve, more than 64 percent of kindergarteners suffer from untreated tooth decay,” says Jeri Royce, President & CEO of Esperança. “This is just one example of how this generous support from Thunderbirds Charities will help us continue our mission to combat poor oral health, obesity and diabetes through our bilingual health education programs.” Over the past two decades, Esperança’s domestic program has served more than 30,000 children, adults and seniors in the most vulnerable communities of Maricopa County, ensuring they receive culturally appropriate preventive health […] More

In the Community – Human Services Campus

Today’s In the Community Conversation is with Thunderbirds Big Chief Chance Cozby and Amy Schwabenlender, executive director of Human Services Campus. Schwabenlender discussed the current challenges surrounding the COVID-19 crisis, how it has impacted those experiencing homelessness in the Valley and changes Human Services Campus has been forced to make to combat the crisis. The Human Services Campus (HSC) is a collaborative agency on the Human Services Campus and provides resources to individuals experiencing homelessness in Maricopa County. Located near downtown Phoenix, HSC is comprised of a dynamic team committed to assisting individuals with ending their homelessness. We offer a competitive total compensation package including medical, dental, life, paid holidays, vacation and personal time, and the satisfaction of giving hope and transforming lives. Schwabenlender first discussed the importance of having a healthcare provider on the Human Services Campus. “One of the benefits of the Human Services Campus is having a health care provider right here,” said Schwabenlender. “It’s operated by Circle the City and we’ve really leaned on them for medical leadership and their guidance on how to temporarily repurpose our operation to ensure the health and safety of as many people as possible.” Obviously, the current pandemic has created significant challenges […] More

St. Vincent de Paul Completes Major Expansion with Support from Thunderbirds Charities

In 2016, St. Vincent de Paul (SVdP) embarked on their first large-scale capital project in nearly 25 years. One of the goals was to fund a major expansion of the SVdP Medical and Dental Clinic. The Clinic faced serious space constraints, and the aging facilities needed upgrades. The campaign allowed SVdP to double the square footage of the Clinic, and significantly increased patient services, volunteer opportunities, and community collaboration. Thunderbirds Charities’ helped with the purchase of much needed, high tech equipment that has the capability to enhance vision for diabetic and other at-risk patients. The treatment of diabetic retinopathy is the most pressing need of current clinic patients. Before, the Clinic was able to diagnose patients but did not have a way of treating them. With the purchase of a visual-field machine, the Clinic is now able to detect glaucoma in patients without referring them to an outside business. Even after the initial campaign, Thunderbirds Charities came back to support the build out of two new operators in their Dental Clinic. This expansion has doubled the number of dental operatories, and significantly increased the capacity to serve adults and children in need of care that alleviates pain, prevents future problems, […] More

In the Community – UMOM

Today, The Thunderbirds checked in with Darlene Newsom, CEO of UMOM, to discuss the current challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, communicate immediate essential needs and spread their messages to the local communities they serve, rally support and secure vital resources so they may continue to help as much as they can. Since its inception in 1964, UMOM has been an innovative provider of shelter, housing and services for people experiencing homelessness. UMOM provides safe shelter and supportive services for hundreds of families across the Valley by providing access to affordable housing and special Program Centers for its residents. Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of The Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open – has been a long-time supporter of UMOM, providing monetary funds, clothing donations and other basic necessities to combat the effects of homelessness. “It’s not business as usual,” said Newsom. “We are an essential service declared by the Governor, so we will be here no matter what. This last week, our wait list went up by 30 percent, so we have 180 families on our wait list. I feel it’s our responsibility to be able to serve those families, so we are opening up 20 […] More

Experience Matters Awarded $50,000 Grant from Thunderbirds Charities

Experience Matters has received a generous $50,000 grant from Thunderbirds Charities to support expansion of their collaborative Literacy and Mentors Program, a K-3 reading program that addresses the urgent need to increase reading readiness of low-income children in Title I schools in Phoenix, Buckeye and Littleton School Districts. “This grant from the Thunderbirds Charities will give us additional resources to expand our activities into new school districts and provide intergenerational connections,” said Experience Matters Executive Director Wendy Cohen. “Over the past 10 years, Experience Matters has impacted over 600 nonprofit organizations in the greater Phoenix area, matched skilled talent to almost 1,300 capacity building projects, while generating over $43 million in Human Capital.” Experience Matters connects the skills and talents of individuals, age 50+, with social-benefit organizations to enhance their capacity to solve community problems. Objectives include providing resources to nonprofits to more effectively fulfill their mission and preparing older adults with meaningful service work to help improve Arizona. “Thunderbirds Charities is proud to support the Literacy and Mentors Program,” said Chance Cozby, President of Thunderbirds Charities. “Additional resources towards the program will ensure that more students can become equipped with reading readiness.” Experience Matters This grant is part of […] More

Oakwood Creative Care Awarded $8,000 Towards Their Dementia Coach Program

Oakwood Creative Care will offer new Dementia Coach services thanks to a grant from Thunderbirds Charities. Oakwood’s Dementia Coach program will help families navigate these challenges by empowering family caregivers and enhancing the quality of life for their loved ones though one on one coaching and emotional support to minimize care partner strain with advanced care planning, educational workshops, counseling, nurse case management and the coordination of health and community services. Oakwood Creative Care is a non-profit providing innovative senior services while revolutionizing the concept of memory care. Over 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s or dementia. After diagnosis, these families often do not know where to turn. Oakwood Dementia Coach program will help families as they face these new challenges by providing expertise in effective care-giving practices. Families will be able to define and set goals for the person with dementia and their caregiver based on values, personhood and preferences. With only 2% of American philanthropic dollar being directed to elderly care, this grant from Thunderbirds Charities is an investment in fulfilling Oakwood’s mission of enhancing the mind, body, and spirit of adults with cognitive and physical challenges. Oakwood Creative Care is committed to helping families keep their […] More

West Valley Arts Council Receives Grant from Thunderbirds Charities for Arts Education Program

Founded in 1969, the West Valley Arts Council exists to enrich the West Valley by growing a vibrant and connected arts & cultural community. West Valley Arts Council’s (WVAC) Arts Education Program (AEP) was recently awarded $8,000 from Thunderbirds Charities to support arts education in the West Valley. Specifically, funding will support professional development workshops for arts teachers and performing artist fees for Arts Advantage, a series of live performances for 4th grade students, especially from Title One elementary schools. The Arts Education Program is tailored for each individual district ensuring that their educational goals for students and teachers are met, and it ensures that the reach and impact of arts education is deepened during and after school. The goals of the Arts Education Program are to make quantitative changes in arts education and support teachers and districts in meeting their academic goals and achieving Arizona’s educational standards for the arts. Through the AEP, the Arts Council will strengthen relationships with area school districts, and build on the organization’s belief that the arts and arts education are fundamental to a healthy society; impact a child’s academic achievement throughout their school years and beyond; promote a higher quality of life; and […] More

In the Community – Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley

Today’s check in is with Thunderbirds 2021 Tournament Chairman Scott Jenkins and Marcia Mintz, President and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley. Marcia discussed the current challenges surrounding the COVID-19 crisis, how Boys and Girls Club is responding to the pandemic and what immediate and essential needs they require to continue helping people in need throughout the Phoenix area. BGCAZ has been the largest and most trusted childcare provider in the Valley for decades. The organization started in 1963 with one club in Tempe and quickly branched into multiple clubs throughout Arizona, providing a safe, positive, and fun environment for their kids’ out-of-school time. Whether it is during a summer camp, after-school time, or in one of their other enrichment programs, BGCAZ offers unique experiences in the arts, physical fitness, character development, and leadership training. They also provide proven educational programs and academic support — along with plenty of healthy fun and recreation. Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of The Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open – has been a long-time supporter of BGCAZ, providing monetary funds for operational and capital needs to serve thousands of at-risk children each year. “When COVID-19 hit […] More

Year Up Arizona Receives $50,000 Grant from Thunderbirds Charities

Year Up enables motivated young adults ages 18-24 to move from minimum wage to meaningful careers in just one year by providing the skills, experience, and support they need to reach their full potential. Through a one-year, intensive program, Year Up utilizes a high-expectations, high-support model that combines marketable job skills, stipends, coursework eligible for college credit, and corporate internships at more than 250 top companies. Its holistic approach focuses on students’ professional and personal development to enable young adults with a viable path to economic self-sufficiency and meaningful careers. Continuing to expand its reach and provide even more young adults with access to economic opportunity, the nonprofit workforce development program Year Up Arizona announced today that it has received a $50,000 grant from Thunderbirds Charities. The funding will enable Year Up Arizona’s Central City Campus at GateWay Community College to grow to serve more than 240 students in 2020, allowing Year Up Arizona to serve more than 320 young adults across both of its locations. “With the support of Thunderbirds Charities, Year up Arizona will be able to amplify its impact and provide more motivated, talented young adults with the skills and support they need to move from minimum […] More

Thunderbirds Charities Supports Furnishing Dignity

Furnishing Dignity serves individuals and families moving out of homelessness and foster kids transitioning into their own apartments. The charity provides essential home furnishings, including beds, dressers, tables, sofas, and small kitchen appliances. The new and gently-used furnishings are free to the recipients, and volunteer moving teams set up the household. Thunderbirds Charities has awarded Furnishing Dignity $25,000 to supply furnishings and home essentials to even more clients. “Everyone deserves a bed; every child needs a place do homework,” said Co-Founder, Joyce Petrowski. “These are things so many people take for granted, but these simple furnishings provide a major confidence boost to our recipients as they transform their lives.” “Because of Furnishing Dignity, these individuals and families can focus on other pressing issues, like finding and keeping jobs, focusing on health issues, and enrolling kids in school or daycare,” said board member, Anita Buckel. Furnishing Dignity This grant is part of the Fall 2019 cycle. View a list of all Recent Grantees.   More

In the Community – Andre House

The Thunderbirds are reaching out to its many incredible charity partners over the next few weeks to discuss their important work and highlight the new obstacles they are enduring as a result of the Covid-19 crisis. We hope that by sharing their messages to the local communities they serve it will help rally support and secure vital resources needed to continue. They are on the front lines doing everything in their power to brighten the lives of so many facing overwhelming obstacles during these trying times. To help as much as they can – and by continuing social distancing practices – The Thunderbirds will be connecting remotely with some of these Arizona charities over the next few weeks to identify their unique needs and where The Thunderbirds and the community can help. Today’s check in is with Thunderbirds Big Chief Chance Cozby and Ash Uss, Advocacy and Partnerships coordinator from Andre House. Ash discussed the current challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, Andre House’s immediate essential needs and how the community can rally together and offer support to Andre House and other local charities that are in dire need right now. Since its inception in 1984, Andre House of Arizona has […] More

Thunderbirds Charities Supports Expansion of Youth Entrepreneurs in Metro Phoenix

Youth Entrepreneurs (YE) is a nonprofit organization that cultivates an entrepreneurial mindset through its experiential learning model which fosters self-actualization in educators and their students. Thunderbirds Charities has recently awarded the organization $25,000 towards Empower College Prep High School as well as other school Across Maricopa County. YE provides educators with resources at no cost to them or their schools to teach students entrepreneurial and economic concepts as well as key principles and character traits through its eight Foundational Values. The educators then tailor a curriculum around their students, providing them with fun, engaging and experiential learning throughout the semester or year. The activities are hands-on and character-building, providing students an opportunity to discover their innate gifts and talents and how to apply them beyond the classroom. “I am very appreciative to Thunderbirds Charities for the generous assistance in supporting our inaugural YE program at Empower College Prep,” Richardson said.  “Because of The Thunderbirds, our student’s lives will never be the same!” Empower College Prep This grant is part of the Fall 2019 cycle. View a list of all Recent Grantees. More

Arizona Museum of Natural History Receives $10,000 from Thunderbirds Charities

Arizona Museum of Natural History (AzMNH) is thrilled to announce the award of $10,000 from Thunderbirds Charities for inclusion modifications their Exploration Station. The Exploration Station is a hands-on space for the Museum’s youngest visitors and their caregivers. The room is designed to encourage play, inquiry, creativity and family interactions to better support learning for children 6 and under. Every learner is unique and AzMNH recognizes that many children visit the Museum with different abilities, learning styles, subject knowledge, interests, cultural values, etc. The funding provided by Thunderbirds Charities will support modifications in a multimedia format in order to increase accessibility for underserved populations, such as vision impaired, auditory impaired, and low English language proficiency readers. Thunderbirds Charities is proud to support the Museum and its efforts to serve a wider demographic, as it continues to provide innovative experiences to every visitor. Arizona Museum of Natural History This grant is part of the Fall 2019 cycle. View a list of all Recent Grantees. More

Thunderbirds Charities Awards Grant to Veterans Heritage Project

In 2018, U.S. News and World Report ranked Arizona #48 for K-12 education, #45 for high school graduation rate, and #48 for college readiness. Veterans Heritage Project addresses this issue by enhancing patriotism and civic education, to strengthen families and community relationships. Veterans Heritage Project (VHP) facilitates an after-school program that strives to develop character and civic responsibility in students by providing experiential learning programs that honor veterans and preserve their legacy. Thunderbirds Charities has awarded $10,000 towards their Connect Students with VeteransTM program. The innovative program provides an enriching educational experience by connecting students with U.S. military veterans in a nationally renowned oral history and publication program.  Thousands of veterans’ stories have been archived in the Library of Congress, personal accounts of war and history that would have otherwise faded away.  The year-round program culminates each spring with a free community reception to honor veteran participants and celebrate student achievement. “In addition to honoring veterans and preserving their stories of service, the goals of our program are to enrich civic and history education and help students reach their potential through character development, leadership skill building, and academic skill strengthening,” said Michelle DiMuro, Executive Director.  “We are so thankful to […] More

Ronald McDonald House Charities Receives $50,000 Grant from Thunderbirds Charities

Families from Maricopa County with children needing medical care who stay at one of the three Ronald McDonald Houses in the Valley have one less worry thanks to a $50,000 grant from Thunderbirds Charities. The grant provides funding for Ronald McDonald House® Charities of Central and Northern Arizona (RMHC-CNAZ) Help-A-Family program to ensure that no family is ever turned away if they cannot afford the $15 nightly fee that is requested. “Every year, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central and Northern Arizona provides a safe, comfortable and welcoming environment for families whose children are often undergoing life-saving medical care,” said Chance Cozby, Thunderbirds Charities President.  “Knowing that financial support from Thunderbirds Charities will, at the very least, ease some of the stress they must be feeling is incredibly important to our entire organization.” RMHC-CNAZ provides a home-away-from-home for more than 1,000 families a year.  Since opening the first House in 1985, families have made more than 53,000 visits. Families at Ronald McDonald Houses stay in private rooms, have access to laundry facilities, large community kitchens and pantries, dining rooms, family rooms, indoor and outdoor play areas, on-site libraries and free Wi-Fi. Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central and Northern Arizona […] More

Thunderbirds Charities Grants $25,000 to Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona

Thunderbirds Charities has awarded Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona (Free Arts) a $25,000 grant to support free creative and therapeutic arts programs for children ages 3 to 21, who have faced neglect and homelessness.  The funds will be used to expand Free Arts core programs: the Weekly Mentor Program, the Professional Artist Series, Free Arts Days and the Camp Series.  It will also support program staff who will recruit and train volunteer mentors in order to serve partner agencies and the children under their care. “We’re so grateful for Thunderbirds Charities on-going support of our programs,” said Alicia Sutton Campbell, executive director for Free Arts.  “They have consistently supported our programs for children who have experienced the trauma of abuse, homelessness, and neglect over the years.  We currently serve approximately 8,000 children and hope to expand that number with the help of Thunderbirds Charities!” The Weekly Mentor Program matches volunteer mentors with groups of children living in social service agencies for one-hour weekly art sessions for up to 16 weeks. In the Professional Artist Series, groups of children work with an artist and volunteer mentors in a workshop series that culminates in a performance or exhibition. Free Arts Days offer […] More

Arizona Burn Foundation Receives Award from Thunderbirds Charities

The Arizona Burn Foundation (ABF) exists to improve the quality of life of burn survivors and their families while promoting burn prevention advocacy and education in Arizona. Serving the Arizona community since 1967, ABF provides survivor support programs that help children and adults cope with the devastating psychological and physical effects of their injuries. They assist burn survivors and their families from crisis to recovery to a life of thriving, one day at a time. All ABF services are provided free of charge. ABF’s H.O.P.E. Services (Helping Others, Promoting Empowerment), encompasses all of the services and programs provided to burn survivors and their families. This includes: Crisis – lodging, transportation, meal vouchers, medical cost assistance, and emotional support Recovery – peer support group, limited financial assistance, camps, retreats, and physical, occupational, and psychological therapy support Thrive – leadership development, conferences, opportunities to give back to the community, and social gatherings “When we address the needs of burn survivors and their families before a financial and emotional crisis is amplified, we support recovery and resiliency. Each time we provide support, we assist the family with a plan for continued success beyond our services,” says Lori Janik, Director of Client Care Services […] More

Thunderbirds Charities Supports A Stepping Stone’s LEAF Program

A Stepping Stone Foundation’s mission is to provide stepping stones to create success through education for children and families who have limited opportunities. Their program, Literacy Elevates Arizona Families (LEAF), provides daily, evidence-based preschool with parental supports, including but not limited to adult education, parenting education, home visitations and inter-generational learning activities. Thunderbirds Charities has awarded $30,000 towards the continuation to improve outcomes for at-rick children and their family through robust inter-generational literacy programming. The 9-month curriculum is presented in developmentally-appropriate learning centers. Children and families attend classes four days a week. Families take high school equivalency and/or ESL classes, attend parenting classes and participate in their children’s classrooms, all while children attend preschool. Free childcare is provided to younger siblings and teachers visit each home monthly to work individually with families. Thunderbirds Charities is proud to support the LEAF program and its efforts to provide quality education in the community. A Stepping Stone Foundation This grant is part of the Fall 2019 cycle. View a list of all Recent Grantees. More