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September 2021
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Fiesta Bowl Charities Awards $25K Grant to Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center for Youth, Children Programs
By Lisa Padilla - Thursday Mar 18, 2021
Fiesta Bowl Charities has awarded the Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center a $25,000 grant to support programs and events that establish healthy lifestyle choices for children and youth with disabilities.

Ability360 was among 44 nonprofit organizations across the state benefitting from Fiesta Bowl Charities grant funding in the 2020-21 season. Through the PlayStation® Fiesta Bowl and various community events throughout the year, Fiesta Bowl Charities has granted $16 million in charitable giving the last five years alone.

Grant funding will be used to assess children and youth with disabilities on current basic health and activity status and set individualized goals and objectives.

“This important grant will impact children and youth in the community by putting them on a path to understanding the value of a balanced diet and regular exercise as part of a lifetime of healthy living,” said Gus LaZear, Vice President and General Manager of Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center. “We are deeply grateful on their behalf for the continued support of Fiesta Bowl Charities.”

“We are committed to enhancing the lives of Arizonans and by supporting the Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center and their amazing grassroots efforts. We are collectively making a meaningful difference,” said Patrick Barkley, Chair of the Fiesta Bowl Board of Directors. “Giving back to the Arizona community has been core to the Fiesta Bowl mission since we were founded 50 years ago, from our Board of Directors to Yellow Jacket Committee, volunteers and staff.”

Ability360 has been empowering people with all disabilities for nearly 40 years. The 45,000-square-foot Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center opened in 2011.

“The last year has been incredibly challenging for us all and that is why it is very important that the Fiesta Bowl still deliver these necessary funds to Ability360,” said Fiesta Bowl Executive Director Mike Nealy. “The heroes are nonprofits like the Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center across Arizona who use these funds to improve people’s lives, right where they need it. We are part of this community and it’s our mission to give back to the community.”

Quick facts about Fiesta Bowl Charities:

* $5.5 million given in charitable giving for 2020-21 season

* 44 nonprofits benefit from Fiesta Bowl Charities’ grant cycle in 2020-21

* $16 million in charitable giving over last five years

* $21 million in charitable giving over last 10 years

* $3.7 million granted through Desert Financial Fiesta Bowl Charities Wishes for Teachers in program’s first five years

* Fiesta Bowl gives more in annual charitable giving than any college bowl organization

* More than 1 million people served in 2020-21

* 3,723,570 meals served in 2020-21

* 50,000 PPE face masks distributed in 2020-21

For more information about Ability360, visit http://www.ability360.org.


By Steve Carr