EA SPORTS ANNOUNCES NEW FOUNDATION TO HELP YOUTH SPORTS PROGRAMS IN NEED
EA SPORTS Foundation Awards First Grant to Alaska Football Team
REDWOOD CITY, Calif. - Electronic Arts Inc., (NASDAQ: ERTS) today announced the launch of the EA SPORTS™ Foundation to support youth sports programs that need financial assistance to survive. The Foundation aims to target some of the most disadvantaged athletic programs in the country in order to create safer, stronger and more respectful communities through the development of young people's potential.
The concept, formed earlier this year, was born out of EA's dedication to delivering sports-oriented recreational programs, educational opportunities and social services to young people and their families. The Foundation is based on the belief that every youth-given access to enriching athletic experiences-can be successful and develop positive and healthy behavior patterns.
"This really is an incredible program that matches perfectly with our commitment to be a positive impact in our community and we hope that others will follow our lead," said Brian Movalson, EA SPORTS marketing director. "This Foundation is significant. It is meaningful. And for us, it's just the right thing to do for the student-athletes that may not otherwise have the opportunity. Our mission is to support athletics at all levels and we can think of no better initiative than this one to deliver on that promise."
The very first recipient to receive a grant from the EA SPORTS Foundation will be the Barrow Whalers High School football team in Barrow, Alaska. The Whalers football team kicked off its second season on August 17th, complete with newfound hope and a brand-new football field specially made to survive the elements, including -50F blizzards and very little sun during the winter. EA SPORTS chose the Barrow Whalers as their first recipient because there was an opportunity to give the youth and community hope for the future. They will receive a $20,000 grant.
Barrow High School has experienced high dropout rates, but the football program has given the kids hope and the community a newfound sense of pride. Of the 44 Eskimo, Tongan, Samoan, Asian-American, African-American and Caucasian teenagers who signed up for this football "experiment," only four had ever played organized football before. They went 1-5 in their first season and celebrated their first win with a bone-chilling jump in the Arctic Ocean. The Barrow Whalers and their love of the game are exactly what youth sports are all about.
"We are truly honored and blessed to receive this grant," said Mark Voss, head coach for the Barrow Whalers football team. "We've got 44 kids who are on a team and accountable for one another's success. They've made football part of their identity and it's going to be a part of their character. You just can't put a price tag on that."
The EA SPORTS Foundation will donate several grants of varying amounts every year.
Student Sports (www.studentsports.com) will receive and evaluate all submissions for EA SPORTS Foundation grants.