Rays Community Highlights
Thursday, June 7 — Rays Wives Feeding Tampa Bay Event
In partnership with Feeding Tampa Bay, the Rays Wives participated in a children’s hunger backpack program event. The Backpack Program supplies thousands of local children with bags of shelf-stable, nutritious foods to take home over the weekend and during summer vacation. These child friendly, easy-to-process meals and snacks are given to the 1 in 4 children who are at risk of going hungry on days when they are not in school. The Rays Wives stuffed approximately 700 bags.
Thursday, June 7 — Starting Right, Now
Starting Right, Now ends homelessness for youth through one-on-one mentoring, providing a stable home, obtaining employment, teaching financial literacy/life skills, and promoting educational achievement. Starting Right, Now intercedes at a critical juncture in a child’s life, breaking the cycle of poverty. Their model provides a deep, holistic and personal approach to end homelessness, one family, one child, at a time. Their mission is to cure homelessness, achieving remarkable results.
The Tampa Bay Rays are proud to have supported Starting Right, Now since its inception. On Thursday, the Rays presented them with a $40,000 grant.
Rays pitcher Chris Archer is an avid supporter of both campuses in Tampa and St. Petersburg and provides financial support through his strikeout campaign. For every strikeout Chris records, Chris, the Rays Baseball Foundation and the Crown Automotive Group will donate $25 to Starting Right, Now. You can join and pledge to help as well by visiting raysbaseball.com/archer.
Friday, June 8 — Pride Night
Prior to Friday’s game, Dr. Jason Fields and Claire Elisan were recognized in a pregame presentation for their volunteer efforts with local LGBTQ organizations. Dr. Jason Fields is the Medical Director at the Drug Abuse Comprehensive Coordinating Office (DACCO), President of the American Society of Addiction Medicine and on the Board of Directors for the Tampa Bay International Gay Lesbian Film Festival. Claire Elisan is the CEO and Founder of Project No Labels, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to unite LGBTQ+ supporters with straight allies in Tampa Bay through positive activities and events.
We also recognized our partnership with Community Tampa Bay, presenting them with a grant for $20,000. The mission of Community Tampa Bay today is to cultivate inclusive leaders to change communities through dialogue and cross-cultural interactions. Community Tampa Bay envisions a community free from discrimination in which every individual is treated with dignity and respect. We include every individual, regardless of their race, faith, nationality, ethnicity, sex, gender, sexual orientation, age, class, and physical or mental ability.
Sunday, June 10 — Pitch, Hit & Run
Scotts® Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run is a free skills competition that provides boys and girls the opportunity to showcase their pitching, hitting and running abilities. Winners advance through four levels of competition, including Team Championship events and the National Finals at the MLB All-Star Game.
Prior to Sunday’s game, children participated in the Team Championship event at Tropicana Field. These children made their way to the event by advancing in various competitions throughout the state of Florida. During the game, we recognized the winners.
For more information on Rays Play Ball initiatives, including Pitch, Hit & Run, please visit raysbaseball.com/playball.
Sunday, June 10 — Be Water Smart from the Start
The Rays have once again teamed up with local YMCAs, the United Way Suncoast, the Juvenile Welfare Board, the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County, 7-Eleven, the City of St. Petersburg Parks and Recreation, and Friends of Tampa Recreation to encourage children and families to Be Water Smart from the Start. The summer programs provide access to life-saving water safety programs to both children and their parents.
Before Sunday’s game, the Rays presented our Be Water Smart from the Start partners with grants, totaling $50,000.
For more information on how you can Be Water Smart from the Start, please visit raysbaseball.com/watersmart.
Sunday, June 10 — Mallex Smith Attends Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay VIP Bowl for Kids Sake
Tuesday, June 12 — Tuesday’s Champion
On June 12th, we welcomed as very special guest by the name of Jhorden. Jhorden joins us from the Children’s Dream Fund and has Sickle Cell Anemia. He brought his mother, Brittney, step-father, Rashad, and brother, Keithan, along with him as to meet the team for batting practice, throw out the first pitch and experienced his very first baseball game!
Wednesday, June 13 — Childs Park YMCA
Prior to Wednesday’s game, in partnership with Jabil, the Rays were proud to present Childs Park YMCA with a grant of $20,000. Childs Park YMCA serves as a resource center for the community by providing programs and services for all ages. It makes our community stronger and provides opportunities reaching farther than the Childs Park boundaries.