Rays Baseball Foundation and Helios Education Foundation form partnership

(TAMPA, FL) - The Rays Baseball Foundation and Helios Education Foundation are partnering to provide $1 million in college scholarships for students participating in Take Stock in Children in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Sarasota, Manatee and Pasco counties. Called "Doubling Up for Education," the partnership is aimed at giving students the financial resources and mentorship support they need to successfully achieve a postsecondary education at any Florida state college.

"The Rays are proud to join the Helios Education Foundation and Take Stock in Children in the creation of "Doubling up for Education," said Tampa Bay Rays Principle Owner Stuart Sternberg. "The scholarships and mentoring support provided by this program will open new doors for students and families throughout Tampa Bay and provide long-lasting impacts within our community."

Each time a Rays player hits a double in a regular season game, Helios will donate $600 toward the initiative and the Rays Baseball Foundation will match that gift. The partners expect a combined cash total of $200,000 each season toward college scholarships, bringing the total scholarship investment to $1 million over five years.

"We are in a race against the clock in education today," said Helios Education Foundation Chairman Vince Roig. "We are living in a knowledge-based economy, and it's going to take all of us - parents, teachers, school systems, political leaders, businesses - everybody staying engaged and investing in education if we are to graduate our students college and career ready. We're excited to partner with the Rays Baseball Foundation and to support an organization like Take Stock in Children, which is committed to helping our students achieve postsecondary education success."

Take Stock in Children provides a unique opportunity for low-income and at-risk students, many from minority families, to escape the cycle of poverty through education. The program offers students college scholarships, mentorship and hope for a better life. The program's comprehensive services start in middle school, continue through high school and include helping students transition to college.

Take Stock in Children's programs are based on the principle that given extensive support, motivation and accountability, children will work hard to ensure that they graduate from high school and attain a college degree.

"On behalf of the five local programs that are receiving Take Stock in Children scholarships, I would like to sincerely thank the Rays Baseball Foundation and Helios Education Foundation for their generous support," said Terry Boehm, President, Pinellas Education Foundation. "It's because of partners like these that we are all able to support deserving students in Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Sarasota counties. Although each of our programs work within our own counties, we are all part of a bigger family - that being Take Stock in Children."

About the Tampa Bay Rays
The Tampa Bay Rays have proudly represented Major League Baseball in the Tampa Bay region since 1998. The organization and its foundation are committed to building a strong community bond through meaningful interaction and charitable contributions.

About Helios Education Foundation
Helios Education Foundation is focused on creating a high-expectations, college-going culture in Arizona and Florida by investing in initiatives that create opportunities for postsecondary education success. As an engaged foundation, embedded in communities across both states, the Foundation is contributing its leadership, expertise and financial resources to better prepare students to succeed academically and to compete in a globally competitive economy. Since 2006, Helios has invested over $115 million in education-related programs and initiatives in Florida and Arizona. For more information about the Foundation, visit www.helios.org.