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 Padres Young Sponsors Back-to-School Event for Needy Students

​Padres pitcher Chris Young sponsored his third annual CY All-Stars Back-to-School event for needy school children recently, hosting 120 students from five special programs for a shopping spree at the Mission Valley Target store.

The students came from schools that educate homeless children, and children who have been removed from their parents’ custody. Each student received $50 in new school clothes, a new reading book, a new Nike backpack, school supplies, and tickets to an upcoming Padres game. The schools were recommended by the San Diego County Office of Education because of the needy populations they serve.

“Liz and I are happy to support the students,” said Young, a towering six-foot-ten, who accompanied a handful of the students as they picked out new shoes and clothes. His wife Liz and the couple’s one-year-old daughter also accompanied the students.

Both the Youngs are graduates of Princeton University. “Education is so important, and the students we met at Target came from very challenging circumstances, so it’s gratifying to have the chance to support them,” he said. “Their reactions and the looks on their faces were fantastic. We’re very happy to do it.”

Tara Barrows, Volunteer and Event Coordinator at Monarch Schools, called the event “a beautiful example of how a professional athlete can use his status and influence to inspire and lift-up children in need. “

Barrows said the opportunity for students to pick out new clothing, shoes and school supplies was ”an extremely rare and special experience. Their excitement was contagious! The Young family’s generosity means so much to everyone at Monarch.”

Young’s Padres teammates Adrian Gonzalez and Nick Hundley also took part in the Back-to-School celebration, quietly listening to instructions with the many other volunteers from the Padres front office and participating schools. Gonzalez and Hundley then joined up with youngsters to help them shop.

The students’ transportation to the Target Store was sponsored by Lexus of Carlsbad.

Monarch and Harbor Schools in downtown San Diego, which both educate homeless children; Hillcrest School and Polinsky Center, both in San Diego, which educate children who’ve been removed from parents’ homes; and Mission School in Oceanside, which educates a population similar to Hillcrest and Polinsky.