For the sixth year in a row, Tucson Subaru proudly announced that Youth On Their Own will be the Hometown Charity for the upcoming 2020 Share the Love Event!
Tucson Subaru is one of YOTO’s biggest supporters. Last year’s Share the Love Event provided YOTO youth with almost $80,000 in direct support! In fact, over the years, Tucson Subaru has generously contributed over $380,000 to YOTO programs to support local youth experiencing homelessness!
Subaru’s nationally-held Share the Love Event takes place annually from mid-November to early January. Through the event, Subaru donates $250 each time a customer purchases or leases a new Subaru vehicle. Customers may choose from a list of Hometown Charities nominated by dealerships around the country to receive their donation. As Tucson Subaru’s Hometown Charity, YOTO is not only placed on the list, but also receives an additional $100 donation from Tucson Subaru every time a customer chooses to support us! In addition, Tucson Subaru’s General Manager John Petersavage noted that this year, $5 from every service request made during the Share the Love Event was donated to YOTO, too!
This year, Tucson Subaru truly went the extra mile in their support for YOTO kids! In December, they hosted a Share the Love benefit concert featuring the Goo Goo Dolls in conjunction with iHeart Media at Desert Diamond Casino. YOTO alumni, staff, and volunteers were invited to attend the concert; some were even lucky enough to meet the band! The fun-filled concert raised an incredible $20,000 to support YOTO’s programs!
Current University of Arizona student and YOTO graduate Jesus attended the concert and was among the alumni on stage to receive the check on YOTO’s behalf. Asked about the importance of Tucson Subaru’s partnership with YOTO, here’s what Jesus had to say:
“Subaru’s Share the Love program has had such a positive impact on the Tucson community, and more specifically, my YOTO Family. It’s so inspiring to see a company like Subaru setting the bar so high for other businesses by being more than just a car company. As a YOTO graduate, I know that donors in our community, especially Tucson Subaru, made it possible for me and hundreds of other kids like me to graduate from high school.”
The YOTO and Tucson Subaru relationship also shares a family connection. Michael DiChristofano, brother and business partner of Tucson Subaru owner Rocky DiChristofano, served on the YOTO board from several years. Rocky said that it was through Michael that he came to realize the incredible need in our community for YOTO’s program. “I could not believe how many kids were struggling and in need of the support a program like YOTO is providing,” Rocky shared. He also noted that he liked that YOTO was local and that the program supports youth who are on their own, while also helping to build self-esteem, confidence, and structure to help them succeed not just in high school, but also later in life. “They are able to overcome some horrible adversity in their lives and conquer it by staying in school and graduating! YOTO graduates have proven this over and over again, and that’s why I feel so strongly about supporting YOTO’s program and mission for our community!”
John also told us that the love shared by Tucson Subaru for YOTO also extends to their staff. Last month at a YOTO virtual staff meeting, Tucson Subaru presented a video filled with well-wishes and thanks from employees who appreciate YOTO’s efforts to support youth experiencing homelessness in our community. YOTO staff were so grateful we returned the favor with handmade thank you posters!
John wanted to share this message with YOTO students: “Keep doing your best. You have no idea how many people are rooting for you and how many people are inspired by your amazing efforts!”
Rocky added, “Stay strong, utilize the YOTO resources for support, and graduate! I know it cannot be easy to do so considering the lack of support from home, but finishing your education will not only be your most important accomplishment, but also the gateway to a prosperous life as an adult! If you can get through this, you can get through anything life throws at you!”
We are so thrilled about YOTO’s continued partnership with Tucson Subaru and are so grateful to have Subaru, Rocky, John, and all Tucson Subaru staff as part of the YOTO Family!