Category: Philanthropy

Former New York Knicks Star Stephon Marbury Sets Up Deal to Deliver 10 Million N95 Masks to NY Amid Covid-19 Crisis

Former NBA star Stephon Marbury (photos via Backgrid, Twitter)

According to nypost.com, former New York Knicks star Stephon Marbury wants to deliver something the city needs even more than an NBA title — 10 million N95 masks for hospital workers and other first responders on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic.

To quote:

Marbury, who played in the NBA 14 years before moving overseas to become a legend in the Chinese Basketball Association, told The Post he’s made arrangements with a mask supplier in China willing to sell New York 10 million masks “at cost” for $2.75 each – well below the roughly $7.50 that N95 retailers have been quoting the state.

The Coney Island native said he got the idea last week after learning of the state’s lack of protective gear and the astronomical price its been paying for masks. So the now-retired, former point guard decided to reach out to Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, a presumptive 2021 mayoral candidate who has backed Marbury’s local charities in the past, to let him know he’s ready to dish his biggest assist yet.

“At the end of the day, I am from Brooklyn,” Marbury said during a call from his Beijing home. “This is something that is close and dear to my heart as far as being able to help New York.”

“I have family there in Coney Island, a lot of family … who are affected by this, so I know how important it is for people to have masks during this time.”

With China now beginning to recover from the pandemic, Marbury’s mask contact has more N95s than that country currently needs, according to Brooklyn Borough Hall. The gear would be delivered 2 million at a time over five weeks.

Read more: https://nypost.com/2020/03/29/stephon-marbury-plans-to-deliver-10-million-masks-to-ny-amid-coronavirus-crisis/

Rihanna’s Clara Lionel Foundation Donates $5 Million to Aid and Support Global COVID-19 Response

Rihanna (photo via commons.wikipedia.org

Rihanna‘s Clara Lionel Foundation announced yesterday that it will donate $5 million to aid in the global coronavirus response.

The foundation will team up with on-the-ground partners to serve marginalized communities in the United States, Caribbean, and Africa to prepare and protect against the spreading virus. Justine Lucas, Executive Director of the Clara Lionel Foundation, said in a statement, “Never has it been more important or urgent to protect and prepare marginalized and underserved communities–those who will be hit hardest by this pandemic.”

The Clara Lionel Foundation’s partners include Direct Relief, Feeding America, Partners in Health, The World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund, the International Rescue Committee, and others.

Funds will support:

• Local food banks serving at-risk communities and the elderly in the United States;

• Acceleration of testing and care in countries like Haiti and Malawi, as well as the mobilization of resources and additional capacity and support for Native communities;

• Protective equipment for frontline health workers and diagnostic labs, the establishment and maintenance of intensive care units, and acceleration of the development of vaccines and other therapies across the globe;

• Healthcare worker training, virus prevention and containment in countries that will be on the frontlines of the COVID-19 response; and,

• Distribution of critical respiratory supplies.

The Clara Lionel Foundation stated on its website that it “believes that one of the most powerful weapons we have against COVID-19 is preparedness. Protecting our frontline health workers and marginalized communities around the world requires getting ahead of it fast and the time to act is now.”

Maryland 1st Grader Cavanaugh Bell, 7, Uses $600 of his Savings to Make Covid-19 Care Packages for Seniors

Cavanaugh Bell, 7, of Gaithersburg, Maryland is helping others out of his own savings during the coronavirus outbreak. (Courtesy of “Cool and Dope.” Taken by his mother, Llacey Simmons.)

Anyone, anywhere, at any age, can make a difference if they want. And Seven year-old Maryland child Cavanaugh Bell is doing exactly that.

According to fox5dc.com, young philanthropist Bell spent $600 of his own money, saved up from three Christmases and two birthdays, to create 65 “COVID-19 Carepacks” in addition to 31 hot meals from restaurant Buca Di Beppo, to serve to senior citizens and help local businesses impacted by being closed after Gov. Larry Hogan shut down restaurants Monday.

Cavanaugh filled several shopping carts at Target with food and a bottle of bleach to hand out to seniors. On top of that, he also helped feed 90 students in need on Thursday.

Cavanaugh started a non-profit called “Cool and Dopewith the mission to “eradicate all bullying and youth suicide through political and social action by his 18th birthday on Nov. 20, 2030.”

To read more: https://www.fox5dc.com/news/maryland-boy-uses-600-of-savings-to-make-coronavirus-care-packages-for-seniors-feed-90-students

Russell Wilson and Ciara Pledge to Donate One Million Meals to Food Lifeline and Feeding America in Wake of Pandemic

NFL Quarterback Russell Wilson and Musical Artist Ciara (photo via flickr.com)

According to NBCSports.com, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and singer Ciara have pledged 1 million meals to Food Lifeline and Feeding America in an effort to help keep Americans in need fed in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.

To quote the article:

Obviously this worldwide pandemic, coronavirus, is changing the world, second-by-second, minute-by minute. People are losing loved ones, the elderly and the young, people in between. … So what we’ve decided to do is partner with our local food bank in Seattle, Seattle Food Lifeline, and we’re going to donate a million meals and hopefully make a difference,” Wilson said in a video message.

Wilson and Ciara mentioned people losing jobs in the wake of increasing shut down initiatives in an effort to keep the spread of the virus from proliferating an exponential rates. They’ve already seen friends in the area that work for companies such as Alaska Airlines, the Seattle Sounders – where the pair are part owners – and Seattle Children’s Hospital hit with the effects of the virus.

“We want to encourage every out there to join us in whatever way that you can, big or small,” Ciara said. “Everything makes a difference. Everything that we do together makes a difference and together we will conquer this tough time that we’re going through.”

The Feeding America network of food banks “distributes 4.3 billion meals each year through food pantries and meal programs throughout the United States and leads the nation to engage in the fight against hunger.”

The EBONY Foundation Works to Feed Over 650,000 Children and Seniors Weekly During COVID-19 Pandemic, Starts in Detroit

Image of Food Drive (photo via wikipedia.commons.org)

To address the increased need for food assistance during the COVID-19 outbreak amid school closures and social distancing, the EBONY Foundation starting today, wants  community to know “WE GOT YOU” by coordinating the delivery over a million tons of food to community members in need.

This food recovery initiative will start in Detroit serving Oakland, Wayne and Macomb counties and the EBONY Foundation seeks to use this model in communities nationwide.

Experts agree that school closures and social distancing will play an important role in limiting the transmission of coronavirus. Families and advocates have concerns about how system-wide closures will impact communities who rely on schools for a range of public services, including providing low-income children with breakfast and lunch, which at times may be the only meal they receive during the day.

The EBONY Foundation has appointed Darryl Anderson of Unique Food Management as the Michigan coalition Chair to coordinate organizations such as Meals on Wheels, Lighthouse, Forgotten Harvest and over dozen food pantries with one common mission – to move over a million tons of food and feed over 650,000 children and seniors weekly during this pandemic. Anderson has over a decade of state and nationwide organizing in food recovery distribution.

National emergencies affect each community differently. For over 75 years the EBONY and JET brand has been at the forefront of championing social justice issues for the Black community. As the quote goes, “When American catches a cold. The Black community catches pneumonia.” Now we have the coronavirus, which has a catastrophic impact on our community, education, economics, and basic health – and EBONY will step up.

“Our families often live in households without food or water at times and now we have this pandemic. Some families rely routinely on food pantries, even in relatively healthy economic times. Some families have no safety nets. school closures would cut off access to some of their only reliable meals. When resources get tight, people without means tend to get squeezed the hardest,” says a spokesperson from the EBONY Foundation.

“The problem is straightforward: Without school, a lot of our communities kids often don’t eat. Close to 30 million children use the National School Lunch Program each year.”

Anderson will be coordinating the EBONY Foundation’s pilot initiative of grab & go breakfast and lunch pickups at the schools as well as negotiating with the school district for school bus deliveries to those that are homebound.

Partnering organizations and schools include: Variety Feeds, Micah 6 Sprout, Baldwin Center, Dream Center, All Saints Church, Pontiac Youth Rec, Meet Up and Eat up, Avondale Elementary and Middle School, and the Waterford Schools.

For more information or to get help coordinating resources in another state, reach out to: wefeedyou@ebonyjet.org and www.ebonyjet.org.

Charles Barkley to Sell Memorabilia to Build Affordable Housing in his Alabama Hometown

NBA great Charles Barkley (photo via commons.wikipedia.org)

According to the Washington Post, former NBA superstar Charles Barkley is selling his 1993 NBA MVP trophy and an Olympic gold medal among other memorabilia from his Hall of Fame basketball career so he can use the proceeds to build affordable housing in Leeds, Ala., where he grew up.

“That stuff’s not that important to me. I’ve had an unbelievable life,” Barkley told Birmingham’s WJOX-FM last week, explaining why he isn’t attached to these possessions. “I’ve been in Leeds a lot and we’ve probably got 30 eyesores, as I call them, where houses used to be when I was growing up. Either a rotted-out house or there’s just weeds that have overgrown.

“So, what I’m trying to do — I want to work with the city of Leeds, I want them to give me the spaces, number one. I want them to give me the houses, and I’m going to use my own money, selling my memorabilia.”

To quote the article:

Panini, a sports card and memorabilia company that Barkley has a relationship with, estimated that the MVP trophy alone could fetch $300,000 to $400,000, Barkley said. And his 1992 and 1996 Olympic gold medals? “ ‘I don’t even want to guess,’ ” Barkley said he was told, “ ‘but I can get you a lot for those gold medals.’ ”\

“I got an autograph deal with Panini and I was talking to the guys,” Barkley said. “All that stuff is at my grandmother’s house; I don’t even keep it, to be honest with you. And I said, ‘How much could I get for my MVP trophy and my two gold medals? And I got an autographed plaque signed by the [1992] Dream Team.’ He says, ‘Oh, I can get you a lot of money for that stuff.’ ”

Barkley went to high school in Leeds, which is about 20 miles east of Birmingham, and played collegiately at Auburn from 1981 to 1984. Now working for TNT, Barkley lives in Arizona but remains vocal about his Alabama roots. He has toyed with the idea of running for political office and hasn’t shied away from offering his opinion, whether it’s about Roy Moore when he was a candidate for Senate in 2017, the issues of race and poverty, or Trump.

“I want to do something really nice for Leeds. And if I could build 10 to 20 affordable houses — I want to do green housing, too,” he said. “If I could sell all that stuff, it would just be a really cool thing for me.”

To read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/2020/03/09/charles-barkley-is-selling-memorabilia-build-affordable-housing-his-alabama-hometown/

Students at LeBron James’ I Promise School in Ohio to Receive Free Tuition to Kent State

Photo via Kent.edu

The inaugural class of NBA superstar LeBron JamesI Promise School in his hometown of Akron, Ohio, has received some life-changing news, according to CNN.

All 193 students, who are high school juniors, will be receiving free tuition to Kent State University. The students, who were visiting the Kent State campus, erupted in cheers when they were told of the news, while many of their parents, watching from a live feed in a separate room, burst into tears.

Video of the announcement was released on Wednesday by the LeBron James Family Foundation. To see the video on Twitter, click here.

To quote the CNN article:

On Wednesday, James told reporters that his school has a great relationship with Kent State and the University of Akron. When the school opened in 2018, plans were announced to promise free tuition to the University of Akron when the students graduate.

“We have so many options, and I just know that so many kids in my community just don’t have many options,” James said. “So for me to be able to be in a position where I can give these kids options to decide what they want to do with their future, it’s probably the best thing I’ve ever done.”

According to a press release, the students will be guaranteed free tuition for four years as well as one year of a free room and meal plan. The students will be eligible for the package as college freshmen for the 2021-2022 academic year. To be eligible, they must be admitted to Kent State, fill out required financial aid forms and have completed a required number of community service hours each semester.

To remain eligible, students need to remain in good academic standing, take part in a required number of community service or volunteer hours and complete a minimum number of credit hours per year.

“We are so pleased to take our partnership with the LeBron James Family Foundation to this next level and welcome these students fully into the Kent State family,” said Kent State President Todd Diacon. “Kent State looks forward to the time when our campus is teeming with I Promise students.”

Frederick Joseph, #BlackPantherChallenge Founder, Raises $35,000 For Children With #SantaClausChallenge

New York author and creator of the #BlackPantherChallenge, Frederick Joseph, launches the #SantaClausChallenge after learning the Operation Cover Chicago 2019 toy drive was short 9,000 toys. With only four days until the toy drive, Joseph called on others to join the challenge by donating or buying a gift for kids in Chicago.

Another Chance Church, launched Operation Cover Chicago 2019 with the aim to make it a Christmas to remember for 10,000 families who otherwise couldn’t afford to buy toys. Statistics show that the Chicagoland community is comprised of 9% of students who are homeless and 45% of adults who are unemployed or under-employed.

Frederick Joseph kicked off the #SantaClausChallenge with a $500 donation to their GoFundMe, which aims to raise $35,000 to purchase toys for children ages three to 15. Inspired by his generosity, GoFundMe made a donation of $5,000. “All children deserve to feel like they matter, especially during the Holidays,” said Frederick Joseph. “This is an opportunity to show them that the community cares and is standing behind all families. I’m calling on others to take action and donate to help more kids experience the joy of Christmas.”

As of December 17th, the challenge met its goal by raising $35,000 to service 10,000 families.

Joseph successfully created the #BlackPantherChallenge, an international movement that raised over $950,000 to send over 73,000 children to see the Black Panther film for free in 2018. He’s been rallying behind community based GoFundMes ever since, having raised over $1.25 million to date for good causes.

Operation Cover Chicago 2019 will be giving away the toys to 10,000 families on December 20, 2019 at 9550 S. Harvard Chicago IL, 60628 at 7pm. To make a donation, visit:

https://www.gofundme.com/f/operation-cover-chicago-2019

“Find Black Santa” App Helps Families Locate Black Santas Across U.S. and Abroad

Find Black Santa App created by Jihan Woods (photo via findblacksanta.com)

According to wthr.com, after having trouble finding a Santa Claus her sons could relate to, Dallas psychiatrist Jihan Woods decided to make sure others wouldn’t encounter the same problem.

In 2018, she created a Kickstarter campaign raising some $5,000 in 30 days. The result was a very special app called “Find Black Santa.”

“After several years of trying to find a Santa that was relatable – that my children could identify with, I realized that kind of all over the U.S., but specifically in Dallas, I wasn’t able to find a Santa that represented our family,” Woods explained.

The app lists Santas in 35 states and Washington, D.C. – from Oregon, to one in the Mall of America, and as far south as Florida. She’s even located them in London, Canada, and Amsterdam.

Since creating the app, organizations have reached out to Woods to tell her about their black Santas. And black Santas have asked her to list them for events.

To find Black Santa, click here.

To read more: https://www.wthr.com/article/app-helps-families-search-black-santa

 

NFL Star Khalil Mack Pays Off $80K in Walmart Layaways in his Florida Hometown

NFL Star Khalil Mack (photo via commons.wikipedia.org)

NFL star Khalil Mack delivered holiday cheer for several customers at a Walmart in his Florida hometown over the weekend, according to KNX NewsRadio. The Chicago Bears linebacker reportedly paid off $80,000 worth of layaway accounts, leaving many families with less to worry about.

To quote the article:

The four-time Pro-Bowler took care of the debts at a Walmart in Fort Pierce through the Khalil Mack Foundation, which focuses on impacting lives of “inter-city and under-privileged youth and families.” The store announced the donation in a Facebook post and thanked him for the act of kindness.

“We have some wonderful News! If you have an active Holiday Layaway account at your local Ft. Pierce Wal-Mart, you account has been paid off!” the Walmart wrote. “We here at Walmart would like to thank the Khalil Mack Foundation for your generosity, and for making so many families happy for the holidays!”

Mack covered more than 300 accounts, which cost about $80,000 total, according to the Chicago Tribune. “His foundation came to us and said he wanted to be a secret Santa,” store manager Mathias Libardi told TCPalm.com.

Mack is known for giving back to his hometown. In June, he donated 100 pairs of cleats to the Fort Pierce Westwood football team.

To read more: https://knx1070.radio.com/articles/cbs-news/nfl-star-pays-off-walmart-layaways-in-his-hometown