March 1, 2017

Lead On, Aliy!

Aliy Zirkle Teams Up With ANDVSA To Help End Violence in Alaska

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA (March 1, 2017) – Popular Iditarod contender Aliy Zirkle has announced an effort to fund youth education and violence prevention programs designed to promote healthy, safe, and strong communities across Alaska.

Backed by sponsor Matson, Zirkle is partnering with Alaska Network on Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault (ANDVSA) to support and expand youth programming statewide, including rural villages along the Iditarod route, communities Zirkle has come to know well over her years of racing.

“The support and care I’ve received in the villages over the years has been phenomenal,” Zirkle said. “I’ve been looking for a way to give back; and, if I can help get more kids involved in this program that strengthens their communities as well as themselves, it’ll be a start.”

Last year, Zirkle participated in Lead On!, an annual youth conference organized by ANDVSA, and recognized that the attendees are the face of change for this problem in Alaska. “Kids in this program learn new skills in respect of self and others that they take back and use to make a difference in their communities. Changing attitudes can take generations; but if more kids could participate in Lead On!, we’d be well on our way to ending violence and abuse.”

Lead On! inspires, engages, and supports youth who promote respect and work to end violence in their communities. The three-day conference brings together more than 100 teens and supportive adults from across Alaska to participate with national and local presenters, including Alaska Native Elders, guest speakers, dancers, artists, athletes and advocates in a variety of workshops designed to educate and build community leadership among young participants.

“We are thrilled and honored that Aliy and Matson have chosen to partner with us to not only raise awareness of sexual and domestic violence issues but to engage with communities throughout Alaska to let them know how we can work together to prevent violence, and that everybody can make a difference,” said Carmen Lowry, executive director of ANDVSA. 

In honor of Aliy Zirkle’s commitment to helping combat domestic violence and sexual assault, all donations made to ANDVSA during the months of March, April and May will go towards helping more youth in rural villages and across Alaska participate in Lead On! Donations can be made online at [www.andvsa.org/donate or Facebook/ANDVSA.]

Matson has made a lead contribution of $10,000 to Zirkle’s Lead On! campaign.

“We are taking Aliy’s lead on this important issue for all of our communities,” said Kenny Gill, Vice President of Alaska Operations at Matson. “If anyone can lead in this effort, it’s Aliy. She is as passionate about Alaska as she is about racing, and there’s no better role model for Alaska’s youth. We are eager to support her efforts in every way we can.”

Through its community support arm Matson Foundation, Matson contributes funds, material goods and services to assist in the development and strengthening of local not-for-profit, charitable and community-based organizations located in Alaska and other locations where the shipping company has business operations. 

More information about Matson Foundation, including its grant application guidelines and leadership, can be found at matson.com/foundation. To find out more about ANDVSA or Lead On, visit andvsa.org. 

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About Matson

Founded in 1882, Matson (NYSE: MATX) is a leading U.S. carrier in the Pacific.  Matson provides a vital lifeline to the economies of Hawaii, Alaska, Guam, Micronesia and select South Pacific islands, and operates a premium, expedited service from China to Southern California.  The Company's fleet of 22 owned vessels includes containerships, combination container and roll-on/roll-off ships and custom-designed barges.  Matson Logistics, established in 1987, extends the geographic reach of Matson's transportation network throughout the continental U.S. Its integrated, asset-light logistics services include rail intermodal, highway brokerage, warehousing, and less-than-container load freight consolidation and forwarding to Alaska.  Additional information about the Company is available at www.matson.com.

About ANDVSA

The Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (ANDVSA) is a dual coalition that was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 1980 to strengthen the support systems serving survivors of domestic and sexual violence by facilitating networking among member programs while advocating for social and systems change in Alaska.  ANDVSA is the only statewide organization providing training and technical assistance to the array of service providers that directly address domestic, sexual and dating violence in the state.

ANDVSA serves as a resource for our 19 member organizations by providing training, technical assistance, statewide planning and needs assessment, community education, and gathering and disseminating resources and information critical to our work.

Media Contacts:

Jennifer Thompson, Thompson & Co. 907-561-4488, Jennifer@thompsonpr.com

Lindsey Whitt, Matson, Inc. 907-250-5265, lwhitt@matson.com

Carmen Lowry, PhD, Executive Director, Alaska Network on Domestic Violence & Sexual Abuse

907-586-3650, clowry@andvsa.org


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