Christmas came early for 47 New England area organizations today, as New Hampshire Motor Speedway and the N.H. Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities distributed more than $150,000 to aid local children in need. 

“Today was my Christmas,” said Cheryl LaPrade, director of the N.H. Chapter of SCC. “I am really excited that we could raise as much money as we did and that will impact so many children throughout the region. It was so special to start the holiday season by helping these organizations achieve their mission.”

Representatives from the groups were on hand at “The Magic Mile” during the Gift of Lights holiday celebration to receive the funds, which will provide support to 27,000 underprivileged children.      

“This has been such a great year for the New Hampshire Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities, we were able to raise significant funds despite trying economic times for 47 local charities,” said Jerry Gappens, executive vice president and general manager of NHMS.  “Because of the tremendous efforts of many volunteers, and the generous support of numerous events by corporate partners and the race fans, we are able to make a difference in the lives of many young people throughout New England.”

Chris Emond, the Director of the Concord, N.H. Boys and Girls Club, said that 87% of the 1,200 total club members receive some sort of financial aid through their program.

“The funds we receive through Speedway Children’s Charities will help provide our needy club members a safe place to experience new things they would normally not have the chance to experience,” said Emond.  

On Belay, of Durham, N.H., is a unique adventure based program that builds community among children ages 9-19, who have or had a family member with cancer, is one of the recipients as well.

“We are really grateful for this continued investment in On Belay, from Speedway Children’s Charities,” said Sasha Eisele, the organization’s Executive Director.  “The money will be used for our seacoast programs and also help us in our expansion to Maine, Mass. and Vt.  On Belay serves over 150 children a year with cancer treated parents or that have lost a parent to cancer.  The programs are always free and provide an opportunity to empower kids who are in a chaotic environment.”

In addition to those events, SCC partnered with the Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth and David’s House, a home-away-from-home for families receiving care at the hospital, to host the annual Governor’s Breakfast in July.  That event generated $57,000 for CHaD and David’s House.

The money was raised during the 2011 LENOX Industrial Tools 301, the MoveThatBlock.com Indy 225, SYLVANIA 300 and several other events held throughout the season.  For a complete list of grant recipients please visit http://www.nhms.com/documents/scc_2011_grant_recips.pdf.