Phoenix Suns Charities marks community giving milestone with 2011 grant recipients - East Valley Tribune: West Valley

Phoenix Suns Charities marks community giving milestone with 2011 grant recipients

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Posted: Thursday, August 4, 2011 2:45 pm

With more than $1.36 million in grants to 178 different charitable organizations throughout Arizona this year, Phoenix Suns Charities marks a milestone of more than $11.6 million in donations since its 1988 inception.

The announcement marks the most successful season in Phoenix Suns Charities 23-year history of funding community projects for children and families. Following a record-breaking year of giving last season, the organization this year has donated more than $1.36 million in grants, program support and scholarships to various charities throughout Arizona.

"Phoenix Suns Charities is proud to be able to support a record number of deserving charitable organizations throughout Arizona," said Kathryn Pidgeon, executive director of Phoenix Suns Charities. "We are so grateful for the generous and continuous support of our Playmaker donors, marketing partners and Suns fans for helping us make such a BIG assist this year. At the Phoenix Suns, kids have always been a part of our game plan."

Non-profit organizations applied for funding through the foundation's grant application process. This year, program grants ranged from $1,000 to $100,000. A special reception recognizing all of this year's grant recipients will be at 3 p.m. Aug. 16 at US Airways Center, prior to the Phoenix Mercury's home game versus the Seattle Storm.

In addition, the annual Playmaker Award grant of $100,000, which is funded by Phoenix Suns Charities' 39 Playmaker donors, will be awarded to ICAN (Improving Chandler Area Neighborhoods). ICAN offers programs that seek to improve the academic and personal growth of the most vulnerable youth in Chandler. They empower these young people to be productive, self-confident and responsible citizens.

The grant will assist in funding construction of a basketball court at the new ICAN facility currently under construction. The basketball court represents a key element in the new ICAN facility, as it will be used by more than 200 youth daily.

Phoenix Suns Charities utilizes the resources of the Suns organization to raise funds which benefit non-profit organizations that assist the needs of children and families. Since its inception in 1988, Phoenix Suns Charities have donated more than $11.6 million to Arizona organizations, helping children and families across the state.

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