Fresno Pacific student-athletes committed to giving back

Fresno Pacific FRESNO, Calif. - Fresno Pacific University Athletics is committed to giving back to both the surrounding community of Fresno and the local campus by providing its student-athletes with numerous opportunities to make an impact on and off the playing field.

Sunbird teams, as well as individual student-athletes, are involved in multiple charity, local school and community organizations to develop and build a strong community.

In the fall of 2012, Fresno Pacific Athletics and the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) contributed to the Fresno area by volunteering more than 600 hours of community service and community engagement activities.

Toys For Tots Foundation

The department of athletics partnered with the Toys for Tots Foundation, giving the student-athletes, students and surrounding community the opportunity to join in collecting toys for children of Fresno County.

On the afternoon of Dec. 8 during the men's and women's basketball games, FPU's SAAC and four U.S. Marines collected more than 100 toys to distribute as Christmas gifts to the children of the Fresno area.

The Toys for Tots Foundation has collected more than 452 million toys to distribute to the less fortunate.

Make-A-Wish Foundation

Fresno Pacific joined NCAA Division II's national fundraising efforts by raising money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation on four different occasions this fall.

The SAAC sponsored a Penny Wars event on campus and also collected donations at soccer, volleyball and basketball games to accumulate $1,111 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

The Sunbird SAAC has a goal of raising $5,000 for Make-A-Wish, joining NCAA Division II which has raised more than $405,000 over the past seven years to help grant many wishes for courageous kids.

Canned Food Drive

FPU teamed up with the Community Food Bank to collect non-perishable food items on two separate occasions this fall.

Fans, students and student-athletes were encouraged to bring canned food items to the home soccer and volleyball playoff matches that were collected by the Sunbird SAAC.

The Community Food Bank distributes food items for those struggling with hunger in the Fresno area, giving FPU the opportunity to collect around 175 items valued at more than $250 for those in need.

Community Engagement

NCAA Division II takes pride in making community engagement activities a priority, emphasizing the building of relationships by bringing the community to campus to experience Division II and its events.

FPU men's basketball hosted the North Star Family Center in a community engagement activity, bringing foster children for autographs and pictures with the Sunbird men's basketball team prior to a basketball game.

FPU SAAC also is planning a health and fitness event during a home baseball game on April 20 for the community.

The community engagement experience leaves a lasting memory for the Sunbird student-athletes and for the group of individuals brought to campus, building a lasting relationship between the two.

FPU takes pride in serving those in need, leaving an impact for the surrounding communities of the city of Fresno and the student-athletes involved.

Fresno Pacific Athletics is committed to serving the Fresno area through community service and community engagement activities throughout the 2012-13 academic year.