Cricket Wireless Helped Spread Smiles for Miles over the Summer
Published on: 9/22/2022
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Fighting Summer Food Insecurity through Summertime Smiles
Food insecurity is an issue affecting many U.S. households, especially during the summer months when kids are out of school. To help provide meals to families in need, we launched Summertime Smiles—a program created to help stock the pantries, provide volunteer support and Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) information to local non-profits across the country.
In Colorado Springs, we teamed up with Care and Share Food Bank who reported serving over 10,200 pounds of food in one day thanks to our contribution.
We also worked with Community Achieves, an initiative of the Metro Nashville School System, and provided healthy groceries to 400 families as well as distributed backpacks filled with much-needed school supplies. As an extra bonus, WWE Superstar Bianca Belair joined us in Nashville to meet the families and assist with the food and backpack distribution.
Summertime Smiles ran from July 1 to September 15. Over the course of the program, more than 8,000 people in 34 markets received much needed canned goods and fresh produce. Cricket Nation donated 200,000 meals through their “Play It Forward” efforts, which went toward helping stock these pantries.
Summer Learning with BGCA
For many students, the loss of learning over the summer break can have detrimental effects during the following school year. The impact is even harsher for kids of low-income households, particularly when it comes to maintaining reading and math skills. To help prevent kids from falling behind and losing academic skills while school is out, the Boys & Girls Club of America (BGCA) offers a week-long Summer Brain Gain program at clubs across the country.
To support this year’s learning loss program, we provided 200 “STEM Starts with M.E.” kits to BGCA clubs in five markets: Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston and San Jose. The kits contained bi-lingual English and Spanish math and science workbooks, challenge cards and other materials designed to help the kids build skills and confidence in the areas of math and engineering.
The robot-building activity was a big hit with many of the kids as were the games that taught science and math concepts. As 10-year-old Amira from the Paulding Boys & Girls Club in the Metro Atlanta area shared, “The math activities were cool. I’m not really that good in math but it did help me multiply really fast!”
Summer Brain Gain offers learning modules for elementary, middle and high school students. You can find out more about the program here.
A Summer of Smiles with WWE®
If Cricket is committed to inspiring smiles…which we are…then the WWE is focused on inspiring excitement among their fans…which they do. This summer, we collaborated with WWE to host Meet and Greets with WWE Superstars at several of our Cricket stores. And in some instances, we provided tickets to WWE matches to local youth organizations. Here’s a brief rundown of some of the fun:
WWE Superstars Sheamus®, Kofi Kingston and Drew McIntyre visited a Cricket store in Columbus, Phoenix and Minneapolis, respectively, taking photos with fans and giving them a taste of the WWE excitement.
WWE® Superstar Rey Mysterio® greeted fans at a Cricket store in San Diego. We also worked with the local BGCA chapter to share the experience with club members and provided the club with tickets to an upcoming WWE RAW event.
WWE Superstar The Miz® made an appearance at one of our Washington, DC stores, delighting customers as well as kids from The Latin American Youth Center. We also donated tickets to RAW to the organization.
Beyond the Meet and Greets, we teamed up with WWE to host a Be a STAR (Show Tolerance and Respect) Rally at Boys & Girls Club of Middle Tennessee in Nashville. Cricket hosts these rallies in partnership with WWE throughout the year in various cities to promote emotional intelligence and discourage antibullying among youth. At the Nashville event, in addition to WWE Superstars taking the BGCA kids through the curriculum and playing fun games with them, we also donated $5,000 to a deserving family and gave them tickets to SummerSlam.
These are just a few examples of how Cricket and our ARs helped spread smiles for miles over the summer. Look out for our next update soon.