The Raiders Foundation and the Jack Del Rio Foundation recently teamed up to bring holiday cheer to a group of Bay Area youth. Prior to the Raiders versus San Diego Chargers contest at Oakland's O.co Coliseum on Christmas Eve, the two foundations hosted the final First & Goal of the season.
Throughout the season, the Raiders Foundation brought more than 3,000 local youth and chaperones to O.co Coliseum to enjoy a home game at no cost.
To celebrate the end of the Raiders' home slate and the holiday season, the Raiders Foundation and the Jack Del Rio Foundation hosted more than 120 boys and girls and their parents from East Bay Asian Youth Center, East Oakland Youth Development Center, Boys & Girls Clubs of Oakland and Camp Parks MWR for First & Goal followed by a holiday party.
|Linda Del Rio, wife of Raiders Head Coach Jack Del Rio, helps students with cookie decorating.|
Following remarks from Linda Del Rio, wife of Raiders Head Coach Jack Del Rio and a chalk talk from Pro Football Hall of Famer Willie Brown in Oracle Arena, the families moved inside the nearby Stella Club, where they enjoyed a holiday party complete with an appearance by Santa, lunch, cookie decorating and holiday gifts. In addition, each child received a new winter coat.
"Providing gifts and coats for kids is a great initiative because it is necessary to have a coat, but it's more than that," said Linda Del Rio. "It's a symbol of our love wrapped around them and they can remember that the Jack Del Rio Foundation really cares for them internally and externally."
After a festive afternoon the families headed into the game and celebrated a great win by the Raiders over the AFC West Division rival Chargers.
"We are our glad we could provide support and help brighten the holidays for these Bay Area families," said Megan King, Executive Director of the Raiders Foundation
Now in its third year, First & Goal provided local students with home game tickets, transportation and meals. The students are provided with lunch and escorted by Raider personnel to their seats, located in sections 300 and 334 at O.co Coliseum. The areas surrounding these sections also have kids play areas and kid themed concessions.
Raiders Alumni who have spoken at the chalk talk include Pro Football Hall of Famers Willie Brown and Jim Otto, East Bay native Sam Williams, Santa Rosa's Jerry Robinson, Vance Mueller, Lincoln Kennedy, sideline reporter for Raiders Radio on 95.7 THE GAME, Rod Martin and pro two-sport star Bo Jackson. Glee star Naya Rivera, the sister of Raiders tight end Mychal Rivera, and Paralympian Blake Leeper have also offered inspirational messages to the students.