Thank you Fiesta Bowl Charities!

Make Way for Books Receives Fiesta Bowl Charities Grant to Help Get Books into Hands of Children

While facing unprecedented times due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Make Way for Books received a grant from Fiesta Bowl Charities that will immediately support the organization’s family literacy programming.

This funding is critical for Make Way for Books to serve 450 young children and families. With the Fiesta Bowl Charities grant, Make Way for Books will be able to provide thousands of books for children’s homes through Book Fiestas. Further, support from Fiesta Bowl will help connect families to Virtual Story School, an online digital learning platform where children and families are immersed in reading, engage in skills-building literacy activities, and build community together.

“We couldn’t be more thankful for the support of Fiesta Bowl, especially during these unprecedented times. Many children in our community do not have access to quality books or high-quality early education. Through low-contact book distributions and online programming, Make Way for Books has worked creatively to ensure young children and families have access to quality books and early literacy and learning opportunities throughout the pandemic. But the need in our community is high. Fiesta Bowl’s support means we get can thousands of books into the hands and homes of children and families who need them most,” said Jenny Volpe, CEO of Make Way for Books.

Make Way for Books was among 44 nonprofit organizations across the state of Arizona that benefitted from Fiesta Bowl Charities grant funding in the 2020-21 season. Through the PlayStation® Fiesta Bowl and various community events throughout the year, Fiesta Bowl Charities has granted $16 million in charitable giving the last five years alone.

“We are committed to enhancing the lives of Arizonans and by supporting Make Way for Books and their amazing grassroots efforts, we are collectively making a meaningful difference,” said Patrick Barkley, Chair of the Fiesta Bowl Board of Directors. “Giving back to the Arizona community has been core to the Fiesta Bowl mission since we were founded 50 years ago, from our Board of Directors to Yellow Jacket Committee, volunteers and staff.”

Make Way for Books works to break down barriers to early educational experiences for underserved and economically-disadvantaged young children by meeting families where they are. While a majority of Make Way for Books’ programming was provided in person, the organization has worked creatively to provide books and to develop a new virtual model that meets the needs of families who face compounding stress and obstacles to early literacy and learning opportunities.

“The last year has been incredibly challenging for us all and that is why it is very important that the Fiesta Bowl still deliver these necessary funds to Make Way for Books,” said Fiesta Bowl Executive Director Mike Nealy. “The heroes are nonprofits like Make Way for Books across Arizona who use these funds to improve people’s lives, right where they need it. We are part of this community and it’s our mission to give back to the community.”