M&M'S Hoops For Hope nets $45,093 ror autism research.
CHARLOTTE, NC (June 30, 2003) - Elliott Sadler announced today a donation of $45,093 to the Autism Society of America, with the donations stemming from the M&M'S Hoops For Hope basketball game Sadler hosted on May 21, 2003.
A combined effort of ticket and t-shirt sales, memorabilia auctions and private donations helped Sadler and his Hoops for Hope game raise money for autism research. Sadler will make the presentation via video to the Autism Society of America at their National Conference in Pittsburg on July 19, 2003.
"Giving this money to the ASA makes me really proud to have been a part of Hoops for Hope," Sadler said. "Finding a cure for autism is something that is close to my heart and will probably be something I will contribute to for the rest of my life.
"I can't thank my friends and family enough for their support. Everyone's contributions are special and we are extremely thankful. I would also like to make a special mention of my gratitude to my teammate Dale Jarrett for his time and contribution to my cause and of course to M&M'S - they really went above and beyond all my expectations."
Autism hits home for Elliott Sadler as his niece Halie Dru -- brother Hermie's daughter -- was diagnosed with the condition in 2001. When sponsor M&M'S signed on board, they asked Sadler what charity was close to his heart and how they could help support his efforts. With that conversation, the idea of M&M'S Hoops for Hope to raise awareness of autism was born.
"I think we did a good job of making race fans aware of autism," Sadler said. "I also think the general public is becoming aware of it too as I picked up the USA Today on my way out to Sonoma last week and saw an article about it on the front page. That is the kind of thing we need. Getting the word out there is important.
"Each time I see my niece Halie and she's learned a new word or behavior, it brings a tear to my eye. I hope that events like the M&M'S Hoops for Hope will continue to help families and people affected by autism in the future. I would like to see the Hoops for Hope become an annual event, and get bigger and better for each year to come."
In addition to participating in the M&M'S Hoops for Hope game, Sadler attends various bowling and golf events to raise money for the fight against autism all year long.