A's goal to make a difference evident year-round

A's goal to make a difference evident year-round

OAKLAND -- The A's take great pride in their philanthropic efforts put forth year-round, with their Community Fund acting as a pillar of charity work in the Bay Area and beyond through a series of events, programs and donations.

This year, the A's Community Fund has contributed more than $330,000 to numerous Bay Area charities, as its pledge -- according to the club's director of community relations -- to "team up to make a difference in our community" remains intact.

"I am very proud of our efforts in supporting over 100 local charities monetarily and in providing game tickets and signed memorabilia to over 300 charities to assist with their fundraising efforts during the 2015 season," said A's director of community relations Detra Paige. "The A's Community Fund's goal is to ensure that our mission to team up to make a difference in our community is carried forwarded every A's season."

The Community Fund hosts two major fundraisers each season, including the Community Fund Golf Classic. On May 14, the A's celebrated this event for a 33rd consecutive year, with several A's players of the present -- among them Mark Canha and Billy Burns -- converging with players of the past -- Bert Campaneris, John "Blue Moon" Odom and Vida Blue.

The Chevron Eagles for Education Program donated $2,500 per eagle on the 18th hole for a maximum donation of $50,000, with much of the funds benefiting the A's Community Fund.

Three months later, the A's Community Fund held its third annual Bowling Bash, bringing sponsors, investors and fans together with the club's front office, coaches, players and their families. Since its inception, this event has raised more than $120,000 for the A's Community Fund, which allocates its donations to organizations seeking to improve the quality of life for people throughout the region -- including but not limited to educational programs and assistance for the underprivileged.

Another one of the season's highlights came in September, when the A's raised more than $75,000 on Breast Cancer Awareness Day, with proceeds benefiting the American Cancer Society and the Cancer Prevention Institute of California.

More than 350 breast cancer survivors attended the event, which featured a special pregame ceremony in which participants formed a symbolic human pink ribbon on the field. In addition, the A's stuck with tradition and donated $5,000 to a local grassroots breast cancer charitable organization in memory of longtime KTVU Channel 2 reporter Faith Fancher.

Since hosting the event since 1999, the A's have donated more than $1.5 million to breast cancer awareness, research and education.

Among the season's other highlights:

• A's manager Bob Melvin and his wife, Kelley, teamed up with members of the front office last week to serve hot meals at St. Vincent de Paul, a nonprofit organization that provides assistance to those in need in Alameda County.

• The 16th annual Root Beer Float Day in July raised $34,709, with all proceeds benefiting the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to bring the total raised through the event's history to $448,000.

• The team held its inaugural Pride Night, and portions of the proceeds from ticket sales were donated to the AIDS Project East Bay, Frameline -- a non-profit supporting LGBTQ media arts -- and Our Space, a local LGBTQ youth community center. Each charity received $7,750.

Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.