Sons of Ben annual hunger drive is about giving back to city that provides a place to play

Players, prizes and more at Saturday's "Help Kick Hunger" drive

Help kick hunger image

Photo Credit: 
Courtesy of Sons of Ben

The city of Philadelphia and the Sons of Ben has become the center of attention for the soccer community this week. After celebrating the Union’s new SuperDraft picks on Thursday, the party will continue a few yards from the Pennsylvania Convention Center at Field House Sports Bar (1150 Filbert Street) on Saturday, Jan. 18 for the Sons of Ben annual “Help Kick Hunger” event.

From 7-10 p.m. the Union's ardent supporters group will provide small bites, drinks and entertainment for “Help Kick Hunger," an annual food drive and fundraiser with all proceeds directly benefiting the Bernadine Center in Chester.  The Bernardine Center is a non-profit organization that distributes food and provides resources to low income families within the city of Chester. The Sons of Ben stress the importance of giving back as they fight to kick hunger.

“We want to give back to the city of Chester, we do not want to just go there for match day and leave," said Bill Gusler, a Sons of Ben member and organizer of the event.  "[For all of us] the Philadelphia Union and PPL Park is our second home. We want to help the people of Chester anyway possible.”

The Philadelphia Union takes pride in uniting the soccer community to improve the lives of people in need, and has offered to match a percentage of what is collected at the event. Not only will the Sons of Ben be accepting donations, they will also hold a food drive by collecting canned goods. In exchange for two canned goods will be one raffle ticket that can be used during the 50/50 raffle. 

The event features a silent auction for certain items as well as a 50/50 raffle. In addition to the aforementioned food and drink, attendees will have access to many games for more entertainment.

“We have tons of great prizes this year and probably the most we’ve had yet,” Gusler said. The Sons of Ben will also provide those in attendance with a short slideshow featuring highlights of the 2013 season and thank those who support them.  Although the Sons of Bens organizes the event, Gusler hopes that everyone attending the draft will go to the event. “We want as many people as possible to help such a worthy and important cause, no matter what team you are affiliated with.”

After the event, the Sons of Ben will deliver pounds of collected canned goods and present a check to the Bernardine Center in hopes to help meet the needs of Chester residents. The Bernardine Center uses all the monetary funds toward classes and other resources for families. The event has been a big help for the city of Chester. The Sons of Ben are confident that this year will bring in even more than what was made in previous years.

For the Union and the Sons of Ben, it's all about ending an exciting week for the extended soccer community, by having a great time and supporting a great cause.