Mystics in the Community

The Washington Mystics kept themselves nearly as busy off the court as they did on it this season.

The Mystics connected with a number of local groups to help get some key messages out into the community about health and things that will help their fans with life away from sports.

For example, the Mystics hosted their third Pitney Bowes, Inc. Fast Break to Reading event on Aug. 29—the team’s first game back after the Olympic break. The team offered a package where fans could get a VIP ticket to a home game, a Fast Break to Reading t-shirt plus a pre-game reading with a Mystics player.

In addition, a part of the sale from each package went to the Heart of America Foundation, a group dedicated to giving kids the needed tools for reading and making a success in their lives.

Earlier in the month, Nakia Sanford took part in a press conference that talked about a new media initiative to help District residents stop smoking. The D.C. Tobacco Free Families, a partnership of the American Cancer Society, the America Lung Association of D.C. and the D.C. Department of Health, is a program that pushed local residents to call 1-800-QUIT-NOW and work on stopping smoking.

Sanford is one of the spokespeople for the quit-smoking campaign.

She’s also been busy in other ways, especially when it comes to doing something to help the cause of women and children in the District living in abusive homes.

Sanford started a mentoring program in this area for kids and is working hard to keep families safe in the District. The Mystics helped by connecting with Verizon Wireless to collect wireless phones that aren’t being used any more for the company’s HopeLine phone recycling program.

Every wireless phone or charger brought to the Verizon Center on July 18 (when the Mystics took on Detroit ) was to result in a $5 donation to the D.C.-based domestic violence shelter “My Sister’s Place”

This issue is a problem in the District as statistics said that Washington polic got nearly 13,000 domestic-violence calls during the first six months of last year.

The Mystics connected with Sibley Memorial Hospital on a multi-year sponsorship program. They helped set up a Breast Awareness Game on July 13 where the hospital and the Mystics got together to raise the understanding and money for women in the area who needed help while battling the breast cancer.

In addition, they helped put together the Be Fit, Be Smart Program that let Mystics players come to local schools throughout the area trying to teach kids more about good health and taking care of themselves.