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Phillies Community Unites to Fight Hunger08/01/2011 4:35 PM ET
Phans Feeding Families has united the Phillies community to support hunger relief efforts in the Delaware Valley, where 900,000 people are at risk of hunger. To date, the program has provided more than 190,000 meals for families in need through the generous support of Phillies fans and Phillies sponsors and partners. Included in this total is more than five tons of food donated by fans before the games on July 10 and July 31.
Representatives from the Phillies, Citizens Bank and Philabundance announced the awareness and fundraising initiative on June 30 at Citizens Bank Park. To jumpstart the program, the Citizens Bank Foundation donated $133,000 to nonprofit organizations in support of the campaign, with $50,000 directed to Philabundance. Throughout the month of July, fans have united to fight hunger by supporting food drives, purchasing program pins, and making direct financial contributions. A special public service announcement recorded by Roy Halladay was also shown during Phillies broadcasts throughout July to encourage fans to participate.
"Phans Feeding Families has not only raised awareness of the critical need for hunger relief in our region, it has shined a spotlight in the summer when our supplies are traditionally low," said Bill Clark, Philabundance President and Executive Director. "This is a big boost to our efforts in helping families in our region."
On Sunday, July 31, the program was highlighted before and during the Phillies-Pirates game at Citizens Bank Park. Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay and his wife Brandy, former Phillie Darren Daulton and others made appearances at a pre-game fundraiser that was attended by nearly 200 Phillies fans. The proceeds from each ticket sold provided 150 meals for families.
"Each time I take the mound, I experience the tremendous support of Phillies fans," said Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay. "To see fans give the same level of passion to help those in need is why Phillies fans are the best in baseball."
During pre-game on field ceremonies, representatives from ARAMARK, Citizens Bank, Coca-Cola, Goya Foods, Hatfield Quality Meats, SEPTA, ShopRite and Toyota joined Philabundance for a ceremonial first pitch. Each pitcher symbolized 100,000 of the 900,000 people at risk of hunger in the Delaware Valley. These sponsors provide support throughout the year to local hunger relief efforts through food drives, financial donations or product contributions.
"Hunger is an issue of critical importance to Citizens Bank and it is clearly an issue that resonates with Phillies sponsors and the Phillies fan base," said Daniel K. Fitzpatrick, Citizens Bank President and CEO for Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. "On behalf of the Phillies sponsors who lent their support to Phans Feeding Families, we would like to thank the Phillies organization and Phillies fans for joining us to aid families in need in the region."
During the July 31 game, fans brought food donations to the park and SEPTA's AT&T Station, participated in a silent auction and purchased pins to raise additional funds for the cause. The program was highlighted several times during the game on Phanavision and during the game broadcast.
"We're proud to have provided the venue to showcase this critical local need," said Phillies President David Montgomery. "I would like to express my gratitude to Phillies fans, our sponsors and Roy and Brandy for lending their support to this cause."
The fight against hunger continues. Fans can still participate in Phans Feeding Families in several ways:
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
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