The Dalles Middle School football players Andre Niko and Manatu Crichton-Tunai were called upon to represent the community at the second annual Oregon All-State Football Game held Saturday at Sheldon High School in Eugene.

Starting at 9 a.m. Saturday, the sixth graders take the field, followed by the seventh graders at noon, and then the eighth graders at 3 p.m.

All three games will be streamed for free through www.oregonallstatefootball .com.

Niko, a 6-foot-1-inch, 175-pound seventh grader, will play linebacker and running back, while Crichton-Tunai, a 6-0, 185 eighth grader, is slated for play on offensive and defensive line.

The Oregon All-State Game is made up of two teams from each of the sixth, seventh and eighth grade groups, and each age division plays against opposition of the same age.

Aside from the game itself, the program gives youths a chance to listen to guest speakers and take part in other fun team-building activities at night.

By showcasing the best football players in Oregon, the All-State program is focused on bringing awareness to the nearly 450,000 kids that are in foster care  nationally.

On its website, the program announced that they have partnered with the Department of Human Services Child Welfare Program, Every Child and Oregon Foster Youth Connection to help bring awareness to foster children across the state.

These local Organizations were at the event giving out information on the Oregon foster system as well as speaking to those interested in becoming foster parents.

They also took part of the proceeds and purchased backpacks for these kids.

In the end, the group accumulated more than 1,000 new backpacks donated to the cause, and they had more than $1,000 worth of school supplies and new clothes donated at last year’s inaugural Oregon All-State Game held last July.

For more information about the game and how to help with Foster Care, go to www.oregonallstategame .com.

Anyone who wants to donate new backpacks with school supplies in them, can send an email to Lamont Crichton-Tunai at oryou can send him a Facebook message.

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