Academics in Motion
The Steelers and PPG Foundation partner to support Academics in Motion (AIM), which uses sport as a vehicle to improve the academic, career and personal development of students from economically disadvantaged communities. The program places a youth development coach in local high schools to work with student-athletes to improve GPA and college readiness, increase graduation rates, SAT and ACT participation, parental involvement and the number of students going on to college. www.academicsinmotion.org
Head Coach Mike Tomlin is a member of the All-Pro Dad Team, a program of Family First. The All-Pro Dad Team is a resource for men who want to become better fathers. Team members include active NFL players, coaches and alumni who speak to fathers about positive parenting through radio and TV spots, billboards and events. www.allprodad.com
American Heart Association
The Steelers, the NFL and the American Heart Association (AHA) partner on the Play 60 Challenge, a health and fitness program that incorporates physical activity for middle school students into daily classroom and after-school activities. The Steelers also support the AHA's annual Healthy Family Training Camp and Heart Walk. www.heart.org
Art Rooney Scholarship Fund
The Art Rooney Scholarship Fund, in partnership with the Pittsburgh Promise, annually provides college scholarships for three graduating seniors at high schools located on Pittsburgh’s North Side, where Art Rooney Sr. himself spent most of his life. The annual Gatorade/Steelers 5K Race, Fitness Walk and Kids’ Kickoff Run is the major fundraiser for the scholarship fund. The event features a 3.1-mile level course on the North Side highlighted by a spectacular finish in Heinz Field. www.steelers.com/5k
Back to Football Friday/Play 60 Super School
Each year, as part of the NFL’s Back to Football Friday contest, a Steelers player visits a local school to celebrate it being named a Play 60 Super School. In 2012, Ryan Clark visited Pittsburgh Whittier K-5 and spoke about the importance of being physically active for 60 minutes each day. He led the students in activities including jump rope, weight lifting and hula hoops and presented Whittier’s principal with a $10,000 NFL PLAY 60 grant for health and wellness programming. www.nflrush.com
Boys & Girls Club
The Steelers annually sponsor the Boys and Girls Club of Western Pennsylvania Dapper Dan Flag Football League and host the league championships at the UPMC Sports Performance Complex indoor practice facility. Steelers players have visited the different club sites. www.bgcwpa.org
Breast Cancer Awareness
The Steelers participate in numerous breast cancer awareness initiatives each year including NFL Breast Cancer Awareness month, the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, player hospital visits and special pink-logoed merchandise sales.
At the breast cancer awareness game in October, the team recognizes local breast cancer survivors in a pregame ceremony. Pink Terrible Towels are distributed to all fans at the game in partnership with UPMC and Ford. In addition, proceeds from the sale of pink Steelers merchandise are donated to breast cancer charities. Many Steelers players wear pink uniform items to bring more awareness to this important cause.
As part of the Steelers’ breast cancer awareness activities, players who have a loved one affected by the disease serve as chefs at the “Cooking and Eating for a Healthy Life” class at Magee Women’s Hospital of UPMC. In attendance are breast cancer survivors who enjoy the players’ efforts in the kitchen.
Tight end Heath Miller and his wife Katie chair the annual Bid for Hope to benefit A Glimmer of Hope Foundation, which raises funds for breast cancer research. www.symbolofthecure.com
Members of the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority distribute breast cancer information at GameDay Live before the breast cancer awareness game.
Cancer Caring Center
A portion of the proceeds from the annual Steelers Style Fashion Show goes to the Cancer Caring Center. A current player chairs the annual Cancer Caring walk and has lunch with the top 10 fundraisers. The Cancer Caring Center is dedicated to helping people diagnosed with cancer, their families and friends cope with the emotional impact of cancer. www.cancercaring.org
Steelers players annually participate in the CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) backpack giveaway. CASA works with children in the child welfare system that are neglected or abused. The advocates serve as a voice for the children in court and other situations to help ensure that every child has a safe, supportive and permanent home. www.casaforchildren.org
Catholic Youth Association
The Steelers organization annually supports the Art Rooney Award dinner, named for the team's founder, Art Rooney, Sr. For more than 80 years, Catholic Youth has served the most vulnerable members of our community, children and the elderly. At this past year’s dinner General Manager Kevin Colbert received the Bob Prince Award, which is annually given to a sports personality who carries on the enthusiasm inspired by the former "Voice of the Pirates." www.catholicyouthassociation.com
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC
Steelers players and team mascot Steely McBeam make frequent visits to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh to bring a smile to kids who are battling health issues. Players participate in various events for patients and their families, including the WDVE Radiothon at the hospital. The team also annually holds a monetary collection at a selected home game.
Defensive end Brett Keisel has become known for his world-famous beard. When he is ready to shave the beard, he holds a fundraiser to benefit Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC's Pediatric Cancer Center. "Shear the Beard" celebrity "barbers" have included Steelers Chairman Dan Rooney, President Art Rooney II, Head Coach Mike Tomlin and several of Brett's teammates. The event annually raises more than $40,000 for the Research Center. www.chp.edu
DeDefensive end Brett Keisel serves as honorary chair of the 65 Roses Sports Auction which features several of his teammates and benefits the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The foundation raises funds for research to discover a cure for the disease. www.cff.org
Extra Mile Education Foundation
The Extra Mile Education Foundation provides support for parochial elementary schools educating children of inner-city families. Extra Mile Education Foundation subsidies make tuition in the schools affordable for disadvantaged families seeking a quality, values-based education. Head Coach Mike Tomlin serves as honorary chair of the annual Extra Mile golf outing. www.extramilefdn.org
Gala Pittsburgh Sports Night
Each fall the Steelers host a "Gala Pittsburgh Sports Night" at Heinz Field to raise much-needed funds for North Side children and their families who attend local Catholic schools. The evening features current and former athletes from the Steelers, Pirates and Penguins, as well as local universities.
Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank
The Steelers hold an annual food drive at a selected home game to encourage fans to help those less fortunate. Individual players annually host turkey giveaways for 300 needy families in the Pittsburgh area. www.pittsburghfoodbank.org
Heroes at Heinz Field
The Steelers partner with VA Health Care VISN 4 for a special evening at Heinz Field for Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans. Participants, many injured in the war, try out their football skills with the help of Steelers players. The players enjoy the opportunity to thank the "true heroes" for their service to ensure our continued freedom.
Highmark Caring Place
The Steelers support the Highmark Caring Place, a center for grieving children. The annual Hoge/Starks/Ward golf outing is held at Southpointe Golf Club and is chaired by former Steelers Merril Hoge, Hines Ward and Max Starks. The players also attend a luncheon honoring students who have raised money for the charity. www.highmarkcaringplace.com
Holy Family Institute-Pittsburgh Steelers Courage House
Greta Rooney, wife of Art Rooney II, chairs the annual Courage House Awards luncheon. Each year a Steelers player is chosen as the Ed Block Courage Award winner for overcoming illness or injury. Former offensive lineman Willie Colon was chosen by his teammates, and received the 2012 award from Head Coach Mike Tomlin. www.hfi-pgh.org
Homeless Children’s Education Fund
Defensive end Brett Keisel and his wife Sarah chair the annual fundraiser for the Homeless Children’s Education Fund, which serves as a voice for homeless children in Allegheny County to ensure they are afforded equal access to educational opportunities. www.homelessfund.org
A current player hosts a holiday party in December for clients of KidsVoice, which diligently guides children through the court process and ensures that every agency involved meets the full range of a child’s needs. www.kidsvoice.org
Leukemia/Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk
For the fourth year in a row in 2012, many Steelers players and family members attended the annual Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk at Heinz Field in support of Elijah Smith, son of former Steelers defensive end Aaron Smith and his wife Jaimie, in his battle against leukemia. The players joined “Team Elijah” and sported tee-shirts designed by Elijah. www.lls.org
The Steelers organization works closely with Make-A-Wish to grant wishes. The wish experiences include meeting QB Ben Roethlisberger and other favorite players, a behind-the-scenes look at the Steelers practice facility and tickets to a home game. Roethlisberger makes an annual donation to Make-A-Wish from his personal foundation. www.greaterpa.wish.org
Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA)
Each year, several current and former Steelers participate in MDA’s Pittsburgh Muscle Team which benefits families living with neuromuscular diseases in Western Pennsylvania. At the event the players partner with child ambassadors, who are battling the disease, in a variety of fun activities. www.mda.org
NFL Play 60
The NFL's program for an active generation encourages kids to be physically active for 60 minutes each day in an effort to combat childhood obesity. Many Steelers events incorporate the Play 60 message with players and coaches demonstrating the importance of fitness and activity. The efforts include building Steelers Youth Fitness Zones at area non-profits and awarding grants to local schools that participate in the Play 60 Challenge www.nflrush.com
Operation Once in a Lifetime
Since 2010, the Steelers and safety Troy Polamalu hosted a group of Special Forces service members at a home game each season. The visit was arranged with Operation Once in a Lifetime, which works to make the dreams of soldiers and their families come true by providing financial and moral support. www.operationonceinalifetime.com
Prostate Cancer Awareness
Each September during prostate cancer awareness month, former Steelers linebacker and prostate cancer survivor Robin Cole hosts a booth outside Heinz Field before a home game to help promote awareness of the disease. Several of Robin’s brothers are also survivors, and they lost their father to prostate cancer. In tribute to his dad and to promote screening and early detection, Robin founded the Obediah Cole Prostate Cancer Foundation. www.obcolefoundation.org
Rebuilding Together Pittsburgh
The Steelers, along with 84 Lumber, serve as sponsors of Rebuilding Together Pittsburgh. This annual program renovates the homes of veterans and low-income elderly in the Pittsburgh area with a goal of safety for the homeowner. Steelers staff and players participate in the program each year, along with 84 Lumber employees. www.rtpittsburgh.org
The Rookie Club enables the new players to work as a group in order to gain confidence in their ability to interact with the community as Pittsburgh Steelers. It is an introduction to community service during the players' first year with the team and provides a sense of camaraderie.
Salvation Army - Project Bundle-Up
Players and their families annually take disadvantaged children shopping for winter outerwear as part of the Salvation Army’s Project Bundle-Up program. Patricia Rooney, wife of Steelers Chairman Dan Rooney, and Joe DiNardo, retired WTAE-TV weatherman, are founders of the program. Tight end Heath Miller hosts the annual miniature golf classic in the Spring. In addition, the Steelers host a monetary collection at a home game each fall. www.projectbundleup.com
Shop with a Steeler
The Steelers partner with American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) for the annual Shop with a Steeler event. Children from Big Brothers/Big Sisters receive an AEO gift card and have the chance to shop with Steelers players for holiday gifts for themselves and their families.
Steelers Style Fashion Show/Taste of the Steelers
The team annually holds two fundraisers as part of Steelers Style: Fashion, Food and Football. The annual fashion show features current players and their families modeling clothing from local retailers. The show is chaired by Greta & Art Rooney and Kiya & Mike Tomlin, with two current Steelers players serving as co-captains. Proceeds benefit the UPMC Sports Medicine Concussion Program and the Cancer Caring Center. The Steelers Alumni Weekend Dinner features a sampling of culinary delights, along with an exciting auction of unique, one-of-a-kind items.
Mascot Steely McBeam makes appearances at training camp, home games, Children’s Hospital and numerous charitable events. For more information, visit www.steelers.com/community/appearances.html.
Toys for Tots-Marine Corps
Steelers fans generously brighten the lives of needy children during the holidays by donating to the Marine Corps Toys for Tots drive held at a select home game each fall. www.toysfortots.org
The annual Hometown Huddle is a program throughout the NFL partnering players with local United Way agencies to encourage volunteerism and giving back to the community. The Steelers annually host the United Way’s campaign kickoff at halftime of a preseason game, featuring three corporate participants in a field goal competition. The winner presents the United Way with its first campaign donation of the year. Steelers players and staff also participate in the annual Day of Caring. www.unitedwaypittsburgh.org
Urban Impact Foundation
The Urban Impact Foundation (UIF) is a faith-based, nonprofit corporation which fosters Christian community development on Pittsburgh’s North Side. One of the outreaches is through athletic programs and events. Several Steelers players participate in a football clinic held by UIF on Pittsburgh’s North Side each summer. www.urbanimpactpittsburgh.org
StSteelers players visit the local VA Hospitals to spend time with the patients who have served our country. At several home games each year, veterans and active military personnel are honored for their service to the United States. For Veterans Day, the Steelers honor a veteran from each of the wars going back to World War II and Pearl Harbor. Color guards, representing all branches of the military, are present at each home game. www.pittsburgh.va.gov
In 2012 several Steelers players visited the 171st Air Refueling Wing in Pittsburgh to thank our soldiers for their service.
Westmoreland County Food Bank
Steelers fans attending the night practice at Latrobe Memorial Stadium each August help the less fortunate in Westmoreland County by donating food and money to the local food bank. Giant Eagle matches the food donation pound-for-pound which means twice as many residents are fed. The Westmoreland County Food Bank serves nearly 15,000 area residents each month including 4,000 children and more than 2,000 seniors. www.westmorelandfoodbank.org
Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh
Players provide holiday dinners at the Women’s Center & Shelter which works to put a face on domestic violence. In doing so the shelter aims to help survivors heal, encourage batterers to seek help and build empathy and understanding of this issue. www.wcspittsburgh.org