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Blackhawks Tue Mar 06 2012

Hawks' Bolland Delivers Off the Ice

Blackhawks center Dave Bolland has been active on and off the ice these days - recently announcing the launch of his new charity, The Dave Bolland Foundation. The goal to provide support to marginalized and at-risk youth is evident in the chosen beneficiary organizations. The foundation will benefit the international organization, Easter Seals, which is committed to enhancing the quality of life of people with disabilities, and The Remix Project, a Toronto-based organization that provides resources to underserved youth interested in a creative career.

While those efforts focus on his native Canada, Bolland is also investing in Chicago directly by supporting Beyond the Ball, which uses sports as a basis for teaching both athletic skills and life skills, while building a stronger community. The organization operates in Little Village, which has 40,000 youth under the age of 20, giving it the youngest median age of any neighborhood in the city, yet the least amount of green space per capita.

Beyond the Ball.jpgBeyond the Ball works to develop a positive culture and reclaim space for children to play safely. The myriad programs include after-school activities, mentorship groups, and programs for developing young women. There are even opportunities for kids to participate in "experience trips" outside the city, and media classes so they can learn to communicate their own stories.

This isn't Bolland's first foray into philanthropy. He spent part of his day with the Stanley Cup in 2010 hosting a charity in a Toronto club called Muzik, collecting donations for The Remix Project. In 2011 Bolland became an official ambassador of the Project and hosted the first annual Dave Bolland Golf Classic, which garnered 150 players, more than 20 sponsors and 40 volunteers, raising more than $40,000 for the organization. Bolland also spent much of last summer participating in food drives along with the ISSA Family Foundation, a founding partner of The Bolland Foundation.

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