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Husky Reach Holds Barbeque At Verplanck

Members of the UConn women's basketball team with a Verplanck friend.

Sept. 22, 2011

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MANCHESTER, Conn. -- Husky Reach held its Welcome Back Barbeque at Verplanck Elementary School in Manchester, Conn., on Tuesday.

The event marked the kickoff for the 2011-12 Husky Reach program -- which includes the “Reading Millionaires” challenge, a program that encourages Verplanck students to read and offers a winter trip to UConn as an incentive. UConn student-athletes spent the afternoon playing kickball, touch football and jumping rope with over 500 Manchester community members. There were over 70 student-athletes in attendance representing baseball, women’s basketball, men’s track and field, women’s track and field, women’s lacrosse, softball and tennis.

Through a generous donation by the SBM Foundation, UConn student-athletes visit Verplanck to participate in a variety of activities aimed at teaching the value of education, sportsmanship, integrity and teamwork. UConn's continuing outreach partnership with Verplanck has served to motivate many of these boys and girls to read more books and appreciate the importance of learning.

The "Husky Reach" program is committed to building a "culture of hope" among these young students that they can someday attend college. Once again this year, through an initiative called the "Reading Millionaires Challenge", students will be challenged to read a combined one-million minutes of books --- and for reaching this goal, they will earn a trip to the UConn campus.

The SBM Charitable Foundation, which was established in 2000 by Connecticut Bankshares, the parent company of the former Savings Bank of Manchester. The SBM Charitable Foundation, Inc., is committed to bettering the lives of those who live and work predominately in Hartford, Windham and Tolland counties.