The NBA is putting the focus on furthering its efforts to advance racial equity. The league recently announced it would donate $6 million towards organizations centered on empowering Black youth.
The endowment was announced to coincide with the one-year anniversary of the NBA Foundation. Launched in 2020, the foundation was created to use economic advancement opportunities as a means to empower the Black community. Amongst those on the board are current and retired players and corporate leaders including Michael Jordan, Tobias Harris, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and NBPA Executive Director Michele Roberts. As part of the initiative, 22 nonprofits centered on aligning Black youth with career and employment opportunities will receive grants. Among this round of grant recipients are the tech education-focused nonprofit All Star Code, Black Girl Ventures, the Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation, SGA Youth & Family Services and YouthForce NOLA.
To date, the NBA Foundation has awarded $11 million in endowments to 40 organizations under the league’s larger commitment to donate $300 million to social justice nonprofits over the span of a decade. “It’s been a real labor of love,” Greg Taylor, who serves as the NBA Foundation’s Executive Director, said in a statement. “I feel like we are making great progress. I think everyone on my staff, including myself, feels the urgency of the opportunity to get resources to deserving Black youth and those really effective organizations serving them. So, I’m really happy with the progress.”
The NBA is exploring different avenues to drive change at a grassroots level. In July, NBA Cares joined forces with the Milwaukee Bucks to renovate a local community center. The facility is run by Running Rebels; an organization that uses community engagement to help at-risk youth change the trajectory of their lives. The nonprofit offers an array of programs including ones that are centered on violence prevention, mentorship, higher education, workforce development and athletics.