SONOMA, Calif. (Dec. 1, 2008) “” The Infineon Raceway Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities will distribute $417,936 to 57 qualified youth organizations in Sonoma County for the 2008 season. This marks the fourth consecutive year the Infineon Raceway Chapter has topped the $400,000 mark “” it distributed a one-year record of $554,045 in 2005. Moreover, the chapter has distributed more than $3 million since 2002 to 175 Sonoma County youth groups. The chapter’s Board of Trustees recently approved the distribution of funds at its annual meeting. Speedway Children’s Charities is the charitable arm of Speedway Motorsports, Inc., which owns and operates Infineon Raceway. “Speedway Children’s Charities has been funding us for so long now that some of these children have become young adults and we’re certain they have a greater likelihood of pursuing their dreams because they have been well nourished,” said David Goodman, executive director of the Redwood Empire Food Bank. “There is a certain relationship that is built when you have a partner that shares your concern, and we’ve certainly built that with Speedway Children’s Charities. Since 2001, we’ve received over $100,000, and that translates to about $400,000 worth of food reaching people in our community, particularly children.” The monies awarded in 2008 were generated through a combination of events held during the raceway’s major event weekends, including the Children’s Champions Grand Marshal’s Banquet and the Race & Rock Charity Auction, which combined to raise more than $95,000. Both were held during the Toyota/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekend in June. The 4th annual Classic Sports Racing Group’s (CSRG) Charity Challenge generated an additional $65,000. In all, the chapter hosted 10 events in 2008, primarily tied to the raceway’s motor-racing weekends. The chapter also received a donation from Sonic Automotive Corporation, as well as other national funding and individual contributions. Speedway Children’s Charities is a non-profit organization with the purpose of raising funds to be distributed to qualified children’s organizations. Founded in 1984 by Bruton Smith, chairman of Speedway Motorsports Inc., Speedway Children’s Charities originated at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in North Carolina. Fifty-seven youth groups will receive funding from Speedway Children’s Charities in 2008: ANOVA Center for Education; Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Sonoma County; Bob Burke’s Kids; Boys & Girls Club of Central Sonoma County; Boys & Girls Club of Cloverdale; Boys & Girls Clubs of Petaluma; Boys & Girls Club, Valley of the Moon; Breakout Prison Outreach; California Parenting Institute; Camp Okizu; Catholic Charities Family Support Programs; Children’s Cancer Community; Community Action Partnership; Committee on the Shelterless; Court Appointed Special Advocates of Sonoma County; Education Foundation of Cotati & Rohnert Park; Giant Steps Therapeutic Equestrian Center; Grandparents Parents Again; Hanna Boys Center; Hope Works Santa Rosa; Hospice by the Bay Foundation; Humane Society of Sonoma County; Individuals Now; La Luz Center; Landpaths; Lifeworks; Matrix Parent Network; McDowell Drug Task Force; Mentor Me Petaluma; North Bay Children’s Center; Operation Youth; Petaluma Educational Foundation; Petaluma People Services; Project Night-Night; Redwood Empire Food Bank; Redwood Empire Foster Parent Association Support Services; River Child Care Services; Roseland Charter School; Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital; Sonoma County Adult & Youth Development; Sonoma County Family YMCA; Sonoma Valley Education Foundation; Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance; Southwest Community Health Center; Sunny Hills Services; The Living Room; United Against Sexual Assault; United Cerebral Palsy of the North Bay; Valley of the Moon Children’s Foundation; Valley of the Moon Teen Center; Volunteer Center of Sonoma County; Valley of the Moon Teen Parents Support Organization; Willmar Center for Bereaved Children; and YWCA. “The funding through Speedway Children’s Charities has given such a boost to the Mother and Child program. Our request for funding of the Celebrating Childhood project covered activities for an entire year for nearly 200 children,” said Bonnie Hunt, fund development director for The Living Room in Santa Rosa. “Our intent for the grant funding is to provide the basic, emergency supplies children need on a daily basis, and to give them rich experiences that open their awareness to unlimited possibilities and an appreciation of life. Support from Speedway Children’s Charities is a vital part of creating a complete new generation of positive parent models.” For more information on the Sonoma Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities, email Denise Silver at [email protected] or call 707-933-3950.
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