-- Partners Dunkin', MJ23 Bar and Grill, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Connecticut, and MoheganSunCasino.com Make It Happen --
Uncasville, CT (November 6, 2023) - During the 2023 WNBA season, the Connecticut Sun Community Relations Department accomplished a number of programs, activations, and donations by way of the Connecticut Sun's in-game initiatives announced at the beginning of the 2023 season.
Most notably, the team’s performance on the court helped to raise funds for local non-profits off the court. Community Partners FRESH New London, Black Girls Achieve, and The Village for Families & Children received donations as a part of the Sun’s "Steals for Meals", "Free Throws for Change", and "Anthem And-One" programs, respectively.
Post University, the Connecticut Sun's Official Education Partner, also supported the Sun's "Threes for Degrees" Scholarship Program by donating $100 per made three-point shot by Connecticut Sun players at home games, adding up to a $15,000 scholarship awarded to a local college student.
The recipients of each game-action give back were honored at the Connecticut Sun's regular season finale with check presentations.
Through the support of Connecticut Sun partners, Dunkin' and MJ23 Sports Bar & Grill, "Steals for Meals", a program focused on combating family food insecurity, donated $10 for every steal made by a Connecticut Sun player at a home game to FRESH New London, totaling $3,320 for the 2023 season.
"The Connecticut Sun's support has made a real difference in the New London community and for our organization, and we are so grateful for it,” said FRESH New London Executive Director, Alicia McAvay. “From helping to install backyard garden beds to supporting our weekly food pantry, the Connecticut Sun has consistently shown up for FRESH New London and made it possible for us to provide more culturally relevant food to our community. Our weekly pantry gives food out to over 400 families, and as the Sun’s 'Steals for Meals' beneficiary this season, the funds we received will support our Thanksgiving meal boxes and ensure that all our families get a delicious and full meal.”
MoheganSunCasino.com, the Official iGaming Partner of the Connecticut Sun, donated $10 to Black Girls Achieve for every free throw made by a Connecticut Sun player during the 2023 season. Through the "Free Throws for Change" program, Black Girls Achieve received $6,720—money that will go toward continuing the impactful year Black Girls Achieve has had, including funding the organization's upcoming annual Black Girls Achieve Summit.
"It means a lot to me that the Connecticut Sun is using their platform to highlight the work in their local community, especially relating to the issues of Black women and girls," said Taniqua Huguley, Founder and CEO of Black Girls Achieve. "There are people and organizations that have reached out to me inquiring about our program due to the recognition received from the Connecticut Sun. This donation truly shows the commitment the Connecticut Sun has to our community and to shaping and changing the lives of girls. The Connecticut Sun's donation will allow us to continue to provide life-changing programs for girls in Hartford County. For example, last year we took girls to Africa; this year we are hoping to continue this international initiative."
The Sun's Official Health Insurance Partner, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Connecticut was the donation partner for "Anthem And-One" for the 2023 season. Through this initiative, aimed at supporting mental health and improving access to preventive and mental healthcare, Anthem donated $100 for every completed and-one a Sun player earned throughout the season to Sun community partner, The Village for Families & Children, raising a total of $6,100.
“We’re so grateful that the Connecticut Sun have teamed up with The Village to help address the children’s mental health crisis," said The Village for Families & Children President and CEO, Galo Rodriguez. The Sun’s generosity is helping support our new walk-in Urgent Crisis Center (UCC) in Hartford—a game-changing new level of care for youth experiencing a mental health crisis that offers immediate care and provides families with ongoing support.”
"We are so grateful to our wonderful partners for all their help in making these game-action give backs happen. Having the ability to impact and support our community in this way means a lot to the Connecticut Sun organization, and we hope to build off of the momentum created during the 2023 season to continue to impact our community partners in the years to come." - Morgan Tuck, Connecticut Sun Director of Franchise Development and Assistant General Manager
Established in 2003, the Connecticut Sun is a professional women’s basketball team in the Women’s National Basketball Association that takes residence at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. For more information or to purchase season tickets, visit www.connecticutsun.com or call 1-877-SUN-TIXX.