UPDATED: 12:30 p.m. EDT, Sept. 20, 2018:
The NBA players all grew up in North Carolina where residents are recovering after heavy rains and widespread destruction. Paul, a native of Winston-Salem, launched the recovery effort with $25,000; the NBA matched his donation. Curry also tweeted about the fundraiser on Wednesday.
Several celebrities and organizations have stepped up to help communities in North and South Carolina affected by Hurricane Florence, which forced major evaluations and flooded the areas with massive rain after it made landfall last week.
Most recently, Michael Jordan, who is the majority owner of the Charlotte Hornets and was raised in Wilmington, North Carolina, donated $2 million to Florence recovery efforts. The basketball legend, 55, has family and friends in the Carolinas, where several towns are still burdened with high water levels.
“It just hits home,” Jordan said to The Associated Press. “I know all of those places: Wilmington, Fayetteville, Myrtle Beach, New Bern, and Wallace, which is where my father is from. So quite naturally it hits home, and I felt like I had to act in a sense that this is my home.”
The NAACP, which often plays the role of watchdog in looking at how the federal government responds to hurricanes, also announced guidelines on managing damage brought by the storm. They have offered two guides: Super Storm Florence Unit Advisory and Equity in Emergency Management Monitoring Toolkit. The historic civil rights organization recognizes that the brunt of brutal storms is heavily felt by communities of color.
“Although it has since been downgraded to a tropical storm, the devastating effects of such a natural disaster are felt long after the rain clears,” an NAACP release said. “Those who live along coastal communities often return home to the worst-case scenario – houses, cars and other property completely damaged by the storm. For African Americans and other frontline communities, pre-existing inequities make the situation much worse. Lives are upended, federal aid is insufficient and confidence is all but lost.”
Members of the Carolina Panthers have also begun planning how to provide aid. The team, whose quarterback is Cam Newton, is working with charities, local and state officials “to develop a plan to best assess the needs of the region and ensure we can effectively deploy resources to those most impacted,” according to the Charlotte Observer.