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United Football League and The Salvation Army Announce Partnership

A $25,000 award from the United Football League¹s Omaha Nighthawks to the Omaha Salvation Army will support two programs for Omaha¹s children and teens to take place at The Salvation Army¹s Ray & Joan Kroc Corps Community Center. The UFL expansion team Nighthawks will kick off the 2010 season this fall at Rosenblatt Stadium.

 


 

The award was announced on June 8 at a news conference attended by UnitedFootball League Commissioner Michael Huyghue, Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle, Omaha Nighthawks head coach Jeff Jagodzinski and Major Paul D. Smith, divisional commander, The Salvation Army.

The two programs represent a partnership between The Salvation Army and the Nighthawks that will give young people positive role models, provide activities to keep them off the streets and help them cope with increasing violence and gang activity, primarily in northeast and southeast Omaha.

The first funded program, tentatively called Mini-Hawks is a club for children ages 5 through 12. The Mini-Hawks will participate in mentoring activities with the Nighthawks and will receive special ticket offers. The Kroc Center will be home to the fan club and the site for a season kickoffevent. Mini-Hawks members pay a small membership fee. Scholarships will be available through the Nighthawks award for low-income families who could not otherwise afford memberships.

The second program in the partnership between the United Football League team and the Omaha Salvation Army is for young people ages 13 through 18. The teens will be nominated by staff at Omaha-area Salvation Army Corps Community Centers and staff at other Omaha nonprofits, along with principals and teachers in area schools. Those teens selected will be bused to the Kroc Center from their neighborhood community centers twice a week for sports, recreation and classes. They will interact with the Nighthawks team, attend practice sessions, meet players and will be guests at a Nighthawks home game.

"The program will get these kids out of their neighborhoods and into educational, recreational and character-building activities at the Kroc Center, which is a secure, safe place for them to congregate," said Major Smith. "It is an opportunity for one-on-one mentoring  between team members and kids who face increasing violence and gang activity."

Membership fees for the teens in the program will be paid for by the Nighthawks award.

"We are excited to support The Salvation Army Kroc Center¹s programs that take kids off the streets and to help give them positive role models," said UFL Commissioner Huyghue. "Violence is a daily and nightly threat in many of these neighborhoods."

About The United Football League:
The UFL provides high-quality professional football during a traditional fall season while embracing
innovation and fan interaction. The UFL serves its local communities with pride and dedication, and aims to provide every fan with an exciting and memorable game experience. The inaugural 2009 champion Las Vegas Locos will battle the Florida Tuskers, Hartford  Colonials, Omaha Nighthawks and Sacramento Mountain Lions for the William Hambrecht Trophy in 2010. The UFL is led by  Commissioner Michael Huyghue and is funded by a consortium of private investors. For season tickets, more information and to interact with passionate football fans, please visit www.UFL-Football.com.

About The Salvation Army:
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for  underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.givesalvationarmy.org.

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