The Green Bay Packers selected four Wisconsin high school varsity football teams to be awarded with brand new Xenith Shadow Varsity Helmets ahead of the high school football season getting under way.
Several representatives from the Packers, including Packers alumnus Jarrett Bush, traveled to each school this week to surprise the teams with the news.
Each recipient school will receive 45 donated Xenith helmets to supplement or replace their existing equipment inventory. The recipient schools include: Milwaukee Marshall High School, Milwaukee Riverside University High School, Richland Center High School and Waukesha North High School.
Coaches and athletic directors submitted applications for the donated helmets, and more than 100 schools applied. Many of the schools demonstrated great need for donated equipment to serve the number of students in their athletic programs and to conduct their football programs safely. As football helmets are essential to participating in football, many youth and high school football programs must devote their small budgets to purchasing helmets or focus their fundraising efforts on raising enough for helmets, instead of other necessary equipment or training tools.
Former Packers defensive back Jarrett Bush helped Green Bay Packers Gives Back surprise players from four Wisconsin high school football teams with new helmets.
"One of the reasons we have to turn players away is because we don't have enough equipment," one application said. "In the near future, we will struggle to provide a helmet for the kids who want to represent their hometown on Friday nights," said another coach. "This would be that lifeline that would inspire us to keep going."
"We're proud to help provide brand new helmets to these schools and to help give high school teams the support and resources they need," said Ryan Fencl, football outreach specialist. "Ensuring that schools have all the equipment they need so their students can take the field safely is critical, and we know these helmets will aid in the continued, successful development of these schools' football programs."
The donation is part of Green Bay Packers Give Back and the Packers football outreach efforts, which promote and serve youth and high school football programs around Wisconsin. The gift was also made possible through a donation match by Xenith as part of their Community Give Back Program and their Buy a Helmet Give a Helmet Program.
Packers Give Back is the team's all-encompassing community outreach initiative that includes the Green Bay Packers Foundation, appearances made by players, alumni, coaches and staff, football outreach, cash and in-kind donations, Make-A-Wish visits, and community events. The annual overall charitable impact of Packers Give Back exceeds $9 million.