Civic leaders provide back-to-school shopping for students

(Submitted Photo)

Students ages 5-18 enrolled in Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale scholarship programs for low-income families will shop for new school clothes, shoes and supplies, thanks to community leaders Ellie and Michael Ziegler.

The two have contributed $500,000 to the program over the past five years, according to a press release.

Each recipient from Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale Branches will have a $100 budget to select the essentials they need at the Kohl’s at 21001 N. Tatum Blvd. in Phoenix. Kohl’s will add a contribution to stretch the dollars further, a release states.

“Michael and I strive to create non-profit, corporate and community collaborations for those in need. This program allows the Club’s most vulnerable members to pursue their dreams and academic success,” Ms, Ziegler said in a prepared statement.

“To inject more excitement into our fifth year, we’ve streamlined the program to serve more than 710 children and teens during three high-energy Prep Rallies featuring shopping, games, books, backpacks and special appearances by local sports personalities,” Mr. Ziegler said in a prepared statement.

Two events have already happened with the kick-off event being Friday, July 28 while another happened Saturday, July 29. There is still one more slated from 3-5 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 3.

At the Aug. 3 event, Phoenix Suns broadcaster Al McCoy will join 100 teenagers from Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale Branches as they select back-to-school clothing and supplies at Kohl’s with corporate volunteers.

“We remain grateful to The Zieglers, who have helped level the playing field for more than 4,700 club members since they founded the program five years ago. Prep Rallies provide the essentials for kids who would not have the resources otherwise,” Lisa Hurst, BGCS chief executive officer said in a prepared statement.

Arizona State University Head Men’s Basketball Coach Bobby Hurley and members of his basketball team were on hand along with Mr. and Ms. Ziegler at the July 28 kick-off event.

According to a press release, some of the ASU basketball players are former Boys and Girls Club members.

Coach Hurley is widely known for winning two National Championship titles as a point guard for Duke University’s Blue Devils. He played in the NBA before becoming head coach for the ASU Sun Devils in 2015.

The Phoenix Suns Gorilla and Phoenix Mercury Scorch mascots joined the Prep Rally with Phoenix Suns Ambassadors and volunteers from Suns Charities. These role models, along with corporate and community volunteers assisted 290 children from Vestar, Thunderbirds, Piper, McKee and Red Mountain Branches as they filled their shopping lists.

At the Saturday, July 29 event, former two-time Super Bowl champion and national college football broadcaster Mark May shared his experiences as a former Boys and Girls Club youth member.

Approximately 325 children from Barker, Scottsdale Charros and Peach Springs Branches chose necessities accompanied by community volunteers.

The Scottsdale Independent is published monthly and mailed to 75,000 homes and businesses in Scottsdale.

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