The San Jose Sharks announced on April 27 the establishment of the Sharks Sports & Entertainment COVID-19 Relief Fund that will provide individual grants to the more than 1,800 part-time staff at SAP Center, Solar 4 America Ice in San Jose, Solar 4 America Ice in Fremont and Oakland Ice Center, who are currently unable to work due to event cancellations and facility closures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Funds will be distributed to individuals who apply and qualify through an online registration process.

In the spirit of #TealTogether, Sharks ownership, players, coaches, front office staff, corporate partners, and close supporters of the organization have already pledged more than $200,000 to launch the fund. The Sharks encourage all fans with available resources to make a monetary donation to the fund in support of the people who help make SAP Center events possible and manage Sharks facilities. Public donations will be accepted starting Monday, April 27 and will continue through Saturday, July 25.

“The San Jose Sharks are committed to assisting our part-time staff who create both an enjoyable and safe environment for those attending SAP Center and our three Sharks ice facilities,” said Sharks President Jonathan Becher. “The effect that COVID-19 has had on the lives of these people is drastic and ongoing. This is a wonderful way to say ‘thank you’ to these individuals who make our experiences truly memorable.”

Sharks ownership has committed to matching funds raised through this campaign. Additionally, Sharks ownership continues to pay all full-time and nearly full-time workers during shelter-in-place regardless of the fact that many are unable to perform their roles remotely. Also, Sharks ownership has paid part-time event staff for missed shifts for games that have not yet been played.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic first surfaced, the San Jose Sharks and the Sharks Foundation have been extremely active in supporting our community. On March 19, the Sharks Foundation, in partnership with SAP, announced a donation of $300,000 to local food bank Second Harvest of Silicon Valley to help combat food insecurity during these uncertain times. The monetary donation will provide enough food for more than 600,000 meals to those in need.

– Jim Sparaco