The company behind one of the largest college football bowl games made a huge donation to a community-focused organization just in time for the holidays.

Peach Bowl, Inc. Foundation recently donated $500,000 to Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta (BGCMA) with the express purpose of enriching the organization’s Academic Acceleration program. The money will be used to continue staffing the program, which hires dozens of certified teachers, some of whom work as full-time teachers during the day and assist Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta members after school. 

The donation was something that BGCMA Senior Regional Director Nikki McClain, a 15-year veteran with BGCMA, called “right on time” due to the fact that the funding provided for the program by the State of Georgia had just run its course. “It’s something that’s needed,” she told The Atlanta Voice during an interview. “We all benefit from an educated society.”

According to McClain, the Academic Acceleration program serves more than 7,000 K-12 students at the 25 BGCMA in 10 counties who grew up going to her local Boys & Girls Club in her native Niagara Falls, New York. 

Peach Bowl, Inc. President Gray Stokan agreed the BGCMA locations and the people they serve and employ in metro Atlanta counties are essential to everyday life for so many.

“What they do at the BGCMA is essential to the development of the next leaders of our community,” Stokan said. “We felt it’s important to give back to the city.” Stokan added that being charitable to local organizations is “part of our DNA.”

A check presentation took place at the recently renovated West End BGCMA. Stokan spoke about touring the club and being impressed with the building and its inhabitants.

“Education and children are pillars of the Peach Bowl, Inc. Foundation, and what the BGCMA is doing with these kids is admirable,” Stokan said. 

This article is one of a series of articles produced by The Atlanta Voice through support provided by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to Word In Black, a collaborative of 10 Black-owned media outlets across the country.

Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Donnell began his career covering sports and news in Atlanta nearly two decades ago. Since then he has written for Atlanta Business Chronicle, The Southern Cross...