In addition to funding spectacular tifo, providing the means to set up organized away matches, and affording discounts at businesses throughout town, your 107IST membership also supports a variety of charities and community outreach efforts. These efforts include opportunities to bring more of the community into JELD-WEN to experience the Portland Timbers and the Timbers Army first hand. Thanks to your support for community outreach and charitable giving, some of Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare‘s clients had the chance to share in the preseason tournament experience.
Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare is an organization that provides community mental health and addiction services in Multnomah, Clackamas and Lane County. They serve a variety of individuals: some have been homeless, some have battled addiction or have otherwise have been struggling in the community. CBH provides comprehensive treatment services and also seeks out different activities to help integrate their clients into the community. One of the CBH staff members is a die hard Timbers fan and Army supporter and has taken clients to matches in the past as part of the community integration effort.
As part of our community outreach efforts, the 107IST ensured that several tickets to two of the preseason matches were donated to Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare for their clients to use, so that they could enjoy the game day experience. One of the residential counselors recounts their experience during the preseason:
“The first game, our staff member Meghan (also a huge Timbers fan) took a great group of guys. They had Pizza at Hot Lips and found great seats in the upper levels of the TA section. Two of the guys are huge Timbers fans and attended several games last season with our facility. They were very excited to see the Timbers play again, see captain Jack (who is their favorite Timber), and just be back in Jeld-Wen. For the 3rd guy, it was his very first Timbers match, but he was very excited. The other guys helped him find Hot Lips pizza, helped him find his way around Jeld-Wen, and taught him some of the cheers. Our staff member began to tell him the basic rules of soccer and he explained that he that played soccer as a young adult in the Portland area. They enjoyed the game very much.
“For the second game, our staff member Kyle took three guys to the match. They also got pizza at Hot Lips and then found their seats. All 3 of the guys had been to a Timbers game last season, and had been asking if they would be able to attend this season, so they were very excited to go. Last Christmas, one guy had been given a Timbers hat by his family as a present and this was his first chance to wear it to a match.
“One of the guys, an older gentleman, isn’t very talkative at all and hardly even does any group activities…except Timbers games. At the Timbers games, he is animated and cheering loudly and smiling… And for several days after the game, we are able to sit with and talk sports with him.
“Last season, he caught ‘Timbers fever’ and was an integral part of bringing Timbers news and updates to our clients. He reads the morning sports sections daily and speaks to me and other clients about trades and injuries and any other Timbers news. He watches ‘Timbers in 30′ on TV and makes sure the TV is on the correct channel for away games. He even asked staff to teach him to use the computer and Internet so he could read news on the Portland Timbers website. He especially enjoyed following Darlington Nagbe from his rookie start, seeing him score his wonder goal, and to go on to win goal of the year.
“Thank you so very much for this opportunity. Many of our clients have been in and out of hospitals and group homes their entire life. That life causes them to feel separate and different from everyone else and not feel part of their own community. To be able to attend a major league sporting event and cheer on their local team has brightened their lives. During soccer season and even during off season, they have a connection with each other, staff, timbers fans and the Portland Timbers players that you can just see on their faces.” (Angela Markham, Residential Counselor, CBH)
On behalf of Angela and her clients at Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare, thank you, 107IST members, for continuing to include the community in the Timbers Army experience, and for supporting community outreach efforts such as these. Your membership makes it all possible.