Our Mission: To be the champions of all youth in our community, on and off the ice, through the power of hockey.
Youth Hockey: We foster the growth, accessibility, and sustainability of youth hockey in the tri-state area with the goal of sharing the game we love.
Community: We impact our city and region through programming, investments and partnerships that create a strong community and secure future for children and families.
Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation
The Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation continues to partner with the Mighty Penguins Sled Hockey organization by awarding a $25,000 grant to support the 2022 sled hockey season. The longstanding partnership supports ice rental, league fees, tournaments, and athletic development. The mission of the Penguins Foundation is to actively promote physical well being, encourage teamwork, and provide essential life skills to young people in our community. True to this mission, the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation has proudly supported both the youth and adult athletes at the Mighty Penguins. Getting a good workout, building self-esteem, and being part of a team are just a few of the benefits that sled hockey has to offer the amazing athletes at the Mighty Pens!
In 2010, the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation enthusiastically supported the Mighty Penguins Senior Team at the 1st USA Hockey NHL Sled Classic in Denver, Colorado. The NHL sponsored tournament gave adult sled hockey teams across the country the opportunity to compete while representing their local NHL franchise. Through the Penguins Foundation support, the Mighty Penguins had the opportunity to represent not just the Pittsburgh Penguins, but our fans and the city of Pittsburgh as well. The Mighty Pens team proudly returned with a bronze medal!
Fundraising efforts in 2011 enabled the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation to dramatically increase their grant assistance and support for “Hockey is for Everyone” initiatives. Through the Civic Arena Roof ornament sales, the Foundation was able to give a significant grant to the Mighty Penguins to further their initiatives to provide physically disabled players an opportunity to play hockey.
As the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation continues their partnership with the Mighty Penguins sled hockey teams, we are proudly committed to continuing to support the dreams of these very inspiring athletes. Let’s Go Pens!
Hockey Sticks Together Foundation
The Hockey Sticks Together Foundation was organized to provide leadership, strategic direction, fund development and organizational resource support to non-profit special needs and inner-city hockey programs in Western Pennsylvania. In partnership with the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation, USA Hockey and the NHL’s “Hockey Is For Everyone” program, the Hockey Sticks Together Foundation provides the support needed for each of these programs (including the Mighty Penguins) to expand their fund development and community outreach to increase the number of participants in all disabled and inner-city programs.
Learn more about Hockey Sticks Together https://hockeystickstogether.sportngin.com/
UPMC Rehab Institute
BUPMC Rehab Institute is a dedicated partner in our mission to provide individuals with physical disabilities the opportunity to play a team sport with minimal financial impact to families.
Dr. Mike Boninger, Director of the UPMC Rehabilitation Institute and a renowned researcher in spinal cord injury and assistive technology, knows first hand the impact that playing a sport has on the recovery, development and emotional well being of disabled individuals. When two of his residents saw sled hockey being played at a local rink, they immediately shared the details of the program with Dr. Boninger, who enthusiastically embraced and supported our mission. Dr. Boninger shares his insight into sled hockey and the impact of sports on disabled individuals in an article he wrote entitled “The Transformative Power of Sports”.
In addition to the generous financial grant the Mighty Penguins receive from the UPMC Rehabilitation Institute, the doctors, nurses, therapists and staff host an annual “Just Ice It” Sled Challenge playing their team against the Mighty Penguins senior team. In addition to having a great time taking on our senior team in sleds, the UPMC Rehab team has an opportunity to learn just how serious the Mighty Pens players are about their slogan “Get Ready to Play…Our Way”. They gain an appreciation for how much effort and determination it takes to play sled hockey and how much their patients overcome to succeed. The transformation is amazing not only for our Mighty Pens athletes, but also for the staff of the Rehab Institute!
With the support of the UPMC Rehabilitation Institute, the Mighty Penguins have been able to grow our program and offer opportunities to new players of all abilities who are looking to get on the ice for therapeutic recreation or for those who want to play sled hockey competitively. We are grateful for our partnership with UPMC Rehabilitation Institute and the opportunities provided for our amazing athletes!
Jones Day and the Jones Day Foundation proudly support the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation and the Mighty Penguins sled hockey program in their mission to actively promote physical well being, encourage teamwork, stress the value of education, and provide essential life skills to young people in the Pittsburgh community through youth hockey and other activities.
In 2011, in addition to Jones Day Pittsburgh, the Cleveland, Columbus, New York, Boston, Dallas and Washington offices, were challenged to help meet the goal of outfitting at least 20 new Mighty Penguins players for the upcoming sled hockey season. The cost to equip a player, including insurance, is $1,315. This special fundraising event welcomed all levels of participation, allowing donors to purchase various items of equipment ranging from $35 up to $800. The fundraising efforts wrapped up November 7, 2011 and raised over $33,500, fully equipping 24 children, exceeding all expectations.
Jones Day is a leading global law firm which provides significant legal representation for Fortune 500, Fortune Global 500 and FT Global 500 companies. The continued support of Jones Day and the Jones Day Foundation has been invaluable to the success of the Mighty Penguins organization and our amazing athletes!
IHC Hockey, Inc.
IHC Hockey, Inc. President, Bob Gergerich, has been a tremendous Mighty Penguins partner since the club’s early days. Bob joined our team over 13 years ago when the club was just 1 small team of 8 young players coached by their parents. While these kids could do the basics like skate and shoot the puck, Bob dedicated his time and shared his love of the game to help take these players and the team to the next level.
Bob shared his tremendous hockey knowledge and taught both the kids and coaches how to play hockey. Bob, along with his IHC Hockey Instructors, regularly attends Mighty Penguins’ practice, dividing his time between the junior and senior teams. His hockey knowledge has given our Mighty Penguins teams an edge in competition but more importantly, the confidence to succeed in life.
The success that this organization has achieved would not have been possible without Bob Gergerich’s selfless dedication. We will forever be grateful for all that Bob has done for the Mighty Penguins program. Thank you Bob and IHC Hockey, Inc!
Robert Gergerich founded the International Hockey College (IHC) as a teenager while playing Junior Hockey in Canada. He realized there was a need for a top quality hockey school, not just a camp where the students attended to see and skate with their favorite NHL players. Now entering its 33rd season, the IHC is known as the number one hockey school in Pennsylvania and has expanded to worldwide status in the hockey instruction and player representation business. The IHC is now in the United States, Canada, and Europe. The IHC is a full time, full service hockey business, dedicated to the development of hockey players.
DICK’S Sporting Goods
DICK’S Sporting Goods, Inc. has been a tremendous sponsor of Pittsburgh youth hockey and community initiatives. They proudly partner with and support the Mighty Penguins Sled Hockey athletes. Through their sponsorship, the Mighty Penguins players and their families have an opportunity to play the sport they love with minimal equipment cost. DICK’S Sporting Goods provides players with jerseys and equipment, offsetting the financial burden for the families so their athletes can focus on playing the sport they love.
DICK’S Sporting Goods is proudly sponsoring Team USA Olympic and Paralympic athletes, including Mighty Pens Paralympic gold medalist, Dan McCoy. McCoy has this opportunity along with nearly 200 other Olympic and Paralympic athletes as part of DICK’S Team USA Contenders Program, which offers them the support they need. DICK’S has launched dicks.com/TheContenders to provide fans with profiles of the Team USA Contenders, updates on their Olympic and Paralympic Games journey and track the Team USA medal count and corresponding donation amount to the various, benefiting youth sports organizations. You can check out Dan McCoy’s Contender story here: http://whirlmagazine.com/paralympian-dan-mccoy-reps-pittsburgh-in-dicks-olympic-contenders-program/
Founded in 1948, DICK’S Sporting Goods, Inc. is a leading omni-channel sporting goods retailer offering an extensive assortment of authentic, high-quality sports equipment, apparel, footwear and accessories. As of January 30, 2016, the Company operated more than 640 DICK’S Sporting Goods locations, serving and inspiring athletes and outdoor enthusiasts to achieve their personal best through a blend of dedicated associates, in-store services and unique specialty shop-in-shops. Headquartered in Pittsburgh, PA, DICK’S also owns and operates Golf Galaxy, Field & Stream, True Runner and Chelsea Collective specialty stores. For more information, visit the Press Room at DICKS.com.
Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation
Mighty Penguins Sled Hockey, Inc. is proud to announce that it has been awarded $13,515.00 as part of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation National Paralysis Resource Center (PRC) 2019 2nd Cycle Direct Effect grants program. Fifty-Four grants totaling $963,677 were awarded. The Quality of Life Grants Program supports nonprofit organizations that empower individuals living with paralysis. Since the Quality of Life Grants Program’s inception, more than 3,150 grants totaling over $28 million have been awarded. Funding for these new cycles of grants was made possible through a cooperative agreement with the Administration for Community Living (ACL grant #90PRRC0002-02-01).
Direct Effect Grants fund organizations up to $25,000 to support a wide range of projects and activities that will clearly impact individuals living with paralysis and their families. The projects and programs funded with these grants are for short-to-mid-term impact within local communities.
“We are thrilled to award Quality of Life grants to organizations directly serving people living with paralysis to enhance their independence and engagement in their communities,” said Mark Bogosian, Director, Quality of Life Grants Program, Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. “These projects will have a tremendous impact on those who benefit from their services. The Reeve Foundation is incredibly proud of this program and thrilled to have these 54 organizations join our ever-growing cohort of grantees.”
The Mighty Penguins grant supports our expansion from four to six teams and the resulting need to secure ice acquisition at two additional rinks for team development during weekly practices and tournaments. “We are tremendously honored to be among those chosen to receive a Quality of Life Grant and grateful for the support of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation,” said Board President Joe McCormick. “Without this grant, we would have been hard pressed to fund the new ice acquisition required by our growth, and we might have been faced with reducing physical and social wellness opportunities for our amazing athletes which goes against our program’s mission to operate therapeutic and competitive ice hockey programs for the benefit of individuals with physical and cognitive disabilities in PA and adjacent areas.”
ABOUT REEVE FOUNDATION:
The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation is dedicated to curing spinal cord injury by advancing innovative research and improving quality of life for individuals and families impacted by paralysis. We meet all 20 of the Better Business Bureau’s standards for charity accountability and hold the BBB’s Charity Seal. The Paralysis Resource Center (PRC) is a program of the Reeve Foundation and is funded through a cooperative agreement with the Administration for Community Living (cooperative agreement number 90PRRC0002). For more information, please visit our website at www.ChristopherReeve.org or call 800-539-7309.
Feature in Reeve Foundation Newsletter: https://www.christopherreeve.org/blog/daily-dose/story-of-impact-mighty-penguins-sled-hockey
Cranberry Township Community Chest
CTCC LOGO Building Community
As a non-profit, the Cranberry Township Community Chest (CTCC) engages residents and businesses to actively support community projects and organizations that help make our region a better place to live. CTCC supports the missions of its organizational members (non-profit and civic groups) by promoting volunteerism and providing financial assistance to enable them to achieve their goals.
The Mighty Penguins is proud to have our home ice at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex located in Cranberry Township. The support of Cranberry Township Community Chest has awarded the Mighty Penguins the opportunity to host multiple teams of disabled athletes at our annual Sled Face-off Youth Sled Hockey Tournament. Each year this event brings together our valued volunteers who are ready to assist our disabled community while enjoying competitive sled hockey.
The A. L. Spencer Foundation has provided generous support to enhance the sled hockey experience for disabled adults and children. Their support has been implemental in maintaining the costly, specialized sled hockey equipment for our players.
PA Paralysis Resource Grant
The Dept. of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation ( www.rehabmedicine.pitt.edu ) at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, in collaboration with the Human Engineering Research Laboratories ( www.herl.pitt.edu ) accepted applications for the Paralysis Resource Center State Pilot program in Pennsylvania. The mission of the program is to improve the quality of life of Pennsylvanians of all ages living with paralysis from a variety of different disabilities and their caregivers by improving or increasing the services and supports offered by community-based disability organizations. Brad Dicianno, MD is the Project Director of the grant.
The State of Pennsylvania Paralysis Resource Center will provide grants of up to $25,000 to non-profit, community organizations serving people with paralysis due to a variety of disabilities and their caregivers in Pennsylvania and awarded $18,475 to the Mighty Penguins. The Mighty Penguins award funded ice rental fees as well as equipment for new players living with paralysis and physical disabilities.