Thunderbirds Charities Gives Valley of the Sun YMCA Coolest Summer Ever with $250,000 Grant

Thunderbirds Charities Gives Valley of the Sun YMCA Coolest Summer Ever with $250,000 Grant

Funds to help improve water safety programs and afterschool camps.

PHOENIX, Ariz. – Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of The Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open – announced a $250,000 contribution to the Valley of the Sun YMCA to support the Y’s Water Safety, Day Camp, Afterschool and Resident Camp Quality Improvement and Outreach Enhancements.

“We value our long standing relationship with Valley of the Sun YMCA and applaud the organization’s 125 years of impacting communities and enhancing lives, no matter their background or financial situation,” said Andy Markham, President of Thunderbirds Charities. “We are pleased to support the work of the Y as they teach youth and families lifesaving information about water safety and how to swim, and serve children and teens through summer resident and day camp programs throughout this community.”

Additionally, the YMCA received a special gift of $25,000 from Thunderbirds Charities in honor of past Thunderbirds Big Chief Len Huck, a beloved community leader who had been involved with the Valley of the Sun YMCA for many years.

“We thank Thunderbirds Charities and former Thunderbird Big Chief Len Huck for these generous donations totaling $275,000 that enable us to continue to serve our communities’ most pressing needs,” said Bryan Madden, President and CEO of Valley of the Sun YMCA. “The generous support of Thunderbirds Charities allows us to continue our commitment to improve the health and wellness of our community.”

Valley of the Sun YMCA is one of the largest human service nonprofit organizations in Arizona. As the one of the oldest nonprofits in the state, approaching its 125th birthday in 2017, the YMCA serves local communities in Maricopa County, Pinal County, Yuma, Flagstaff, and Prescott, offering more than 250 programs and 26 social services at its statewide locations. Members are welcome regardless of gender, religion, or ethnicity. Financial assistance is also available to those who qualify. The YMCA aims to provide each member with every opportunity to reach farther and improve their lives and the lives of those around them. Through Youth Development, Healthy Living, and Social Responsibility, the YMCA’s goal is to inspire positive and lasting social change. For more information, visit 


Thunderbirds Charities is a non-profit organization formed in 1986 to distribute monies raised through the Waste Management Phoenix Open golf tournament. The Thunderbirds Charities Board consists of 15 board members from varying professional backgrounds. The mission of Thunderbirds Charities is to assist children and families, help people in need and improve the quality of life in our communities. The organization’s giving is directed toward organizations based or with a significant presence in Arizona. The Thunderbirds were founded in 1937 with the mission of promoting the Valley of the Sun through sports. The Thunderbirds consist of 55 “active” members and more than 250 “life” members. For more information on the Thunderbirds, visit

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