NBA star Joel Embiid is on a mission to combat homelessness. According to the Philadelphia 76ers, the Cameroon native has pledged to make a huge donation to homeless shelters in the Philadelphia area.
Embiid is donating $100,000 to Youth Service, Inc., Project HOME and Sunday Breakfast Mission. The three nonprofits are centered on providing immediate shelter, medical care and career and education resources for individuals experiencing housing insecurity. Through Embiid’s generous donation, 15,000 meals will be distributed to the homeless in Philadelphia, treatment will be provided for 1,000 people getting the COVID-19 vaccine, 4,000 clothing items will be given to homeless youth and adults and over 30 families who are homeless will be aligned with healthcare, employment and educational opportunities. Beyond those efforts, basic necessities and shelter will be provided for 300 homeless teenagers and a summer camp for underserved youth will be launched.
Embiid says he is aware that financial burdens have been exacerbated for many due to the pandemic and that’s what prompted his effort to evoke change. “So many have fallen on such hard times during the pandemic,” he said in a statement. “I felt it was important to provide more support for individuals and families struggling with homelessness and food insecurity. I’m continually grateful for all of the support that Philadelphia and the fans have given me not just around All-Star but all my years in the league. I will continue to help in any way I can.” Initiatives like the one being led by Embiid are needed in Philadelphia as the city’s poverty rate sits at 23.3 percent, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.
News about Embiid’s gift comes after the NBA announced it would donate over $3 million to HBCUs and COVID-19 relief efforts during its 2021 All-Star festivities in Atlanta. Embiid isn’t the only 76er who has been dedicated to giving back to the Philadelphia community. Tobias Harris donated $1 million to charities and organizations focused on advancing education in the city.