SAVE OF THE DAY FOUNDATION 2019 YEAR IN REVIEW
Engaging in Change continues to be the mantra of the Save of the Day Foundation staff and volunteers throughout the year as we identify needs in the community and work toward making a difference. With change as our focus, 2019 has been a very strong year for the Foundation.
The Foundation continues to align itself with three core initiatives:
Youth Health and Wellness
Local Military and Law Enforcement Initiatives
Youth health and wellness continues to be an area of growth and focus for the Save of the Day Foundation. Since its founding in 2003, the Foundation has given hundreds of thousands of dollars to children and their families to help cover uninsured medical bills, assist with transportation costs and in some cases, purchase medical equipment needed for a child.
Save of the Day continues this commitment and in the past year, has donated over $21,000 to children and families facing a health care crisis, with an additional $15,000 committed for this year.
The annual Coloring Contest, now in its fifth year, has become an elementary school favorite with more than 45 schools encouraging their students to participate. The Save of the Day Foundation also works with the New Hartford School District and supports their STEAM program for elementary students, as well as supports OnPoint for College. Education support last year form the Foundation totaled $35,000.
Because the Foundation recognizes the importance of caring for a child includes caring for his or her family, Save of the Day provides critical support in the area of Health and Wellness to many different organizations committed to improving the quality of life for families in our community.
In 2019, the Foundation donated more than $90,000 to 20 different organizations. Our support throughout the community is both financial as well as in-kind donations being sure that we are meeting needs both large and small. Our donations included:
- 300 turkeys to families at the Utica Rescue Mission so they could have a Thanksgiving dinner
- Christmas gifts to families in need
- Supporting youth sports including the Mohawk Valley Youth Hockey Association, Whitestown Youth Hockey, Lady Comets Softball Team, and the Whitesboro Football Association
- Assisting smaller organizations who share our mission of helping children battle cancer including Joseph’s Experience, the Michelle Adey Foundation and the Bobby Page Foundation
- Providing household items for displaced women to start over again in a new, safe environment
Anyone who has attended a Utica Comets game is witness to the Save of the Day Foundation’s unending support of our Military and Law Enforcement Initiatives, donating over $40,000 to military organizations in the past year alone.
At every home game, the Utica Comets honor a Hometown Hero through the generosity of the Save of the Day Foundation. In addition, each year around Veterans Day, the Foundation sponsors a Military night with proceeds from the game’s raffles and auctions supporting several different military organizations including the CNY Veterans Outreach Center, the Military Order of the Purple Heart and the Vietnam Veterans Association.
The Save of the Day Foundation also supports local Law Enforcement initiatives including the Thomas J. Lindsay Foundation, the Kevin Crossley Foundation and the CNY Memorial Stair Climb for first responders.
This year kicked off with the second season of the Adaptive Edge Skating School. Begun in the fall of 2018 under the direction of Courtney Gouger, children with differing abilities take to the ice to learn how to skate. This program brings together kids with and without disabilities who learn together how to skate and how to support and help each other on the ice.
According to Courtney Gouger, Program Director, “not only are the children demonstrating progress in their skating skills, but we are also seeing unprompted, spontaneous interactions among the skaters.”
Dana Dziegiel, mother of Liam, is grateful for the Foundation providing this opportunity for her son, stating “This program has given my son the opportunity to skate and make new friends. I am so thankful to the coaches and volunteers for their unending dedication to this program, and most of all to the children in the program.”
As we celebrate Save of the Day week, we would like to thank you, the fans, for your continued support throughout the last sixteen years and this year especially. We look forward to continuing to expand into 2020 and engaging in change!