Eagles Autism Challenge raises a record $4.1 million

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The football season hasn’t even started yet, and the Eagles are already setting records.

The team’s fifth annual Eagles Autism Challenge, held Saturday at and around the Linc, raised a record $4.1 million, the team announced.

The Eagles have now raised more than $16 million since the inception of the Eagles Autism Challenge, which offers fans a chance to raise money for research to battle autism through bike rides of various distances and a 5K run or walk.

“I think it’s a big deal for the city, I think it’s a big deal for our organization and the autistic community,” Jalen Hurts said after participating.

“The foundation that we’ve created, Mr. Lurie’s created, it just shows that we just want to bring awareness to it, and I think an event like this does a great job of doing that. What we’re building now is very special, connecting, coming together as a football team and as an organization to do great things in the community and on the field. It all matters.”

Dozens of Eagles players and coaches participate in the bike ride and 5K walk alongside nearly 3,000 cyclists, runners and walkers.

The run and bike rides finish inside the Linc, where participants can get autographs and photos with players, and there are numerous games and activities for kids.

“This is awesome,” Jason Kelce said. “It’s just great to get the community together for such a good cause, great to see all the fans and how many people are passionate about this event. It’s awesome and it’s raising a ton of money for people who need it.”

According to the Eagles, one in every 44 people in the U.S. is on the autism spectrum.

Since it was founded in 2018, the Eagles Autism Challenge has funded 63 research projects through grants awarded to those who treat and research autism.

According to the Eagles, all the money raised by the Eagles Autism Challenge is invested in funding research both in Philadelphia and around the country.

“Since we launched five years ago, it’s remarkable to think how far we’ve come,” Lurie said. “From starting with a fundraising event to launching the Eagles Autism Foundation. Together, we’re funding groundbreaking research which creates so much hope for the future. 

“We’re supporting community grants that enhance people’s lives through everything – from job training to creating access to care. Just as importantly, we are helping to create a culture change by driving inclusion, understanding, and acceptance.”

Fundraising for this year's Eagles Autism Challenge continues through the end of the month. Go to https://www.eaglesautismchallenge.org/event/ for more information.

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