CLEVELAND — The city of Cleveland not only will reap the rewards of the substantial economic impact the 2022 NBA All-Star Weekend is expected to bring in, it also will see major contributions from the National Basketball Association and National Basketball Players Association as part of the three-day event—more than $3 million worth, in fact.
As part of the weekend festivities, the league and its union will work with local community organizations and the HBCU community, aiming to provide programming and support for youth, education, health equity, food insecurity and economic inclusion while empowering the next generation of leaders.
To celebrate the NBA's 75th anniversary, the league will partner with Kaiser Permanente and donate it's 2,000th Live, Learn or Play center at the Cudell Recreation Center on Feb. 18. Later in the spring, the league will also create another Live, Learn or Play center at the King Kennedy Boys & Girls Club, where a refurbished basketball court and new wellness space will be built.
The NBPA Foundation will be providing grants to Playworks and Boys & Girls Clubs of Northeast Ohio to boost access to youth sports of area youth. The foundation will also provide grants to Cleveland Votes and The FreedomBLOC to encourage and support civic engagement in Cleveland.
In order to support HBCUs, the league is holding its first-ever NBA HBCU Classic, a game between Howard University and Morgan State University's men's basketball teams that will see $100,000 donated to each team.
At the NBA All-Star Game, Team Durant will be playing for the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, and Team LeBron will be playing for the Kent State University I Promise Scholars Program, with stats in the game reflecting as charity donation dollars. Nearly $1 million dollars is expected to be donated to each organization.
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On Feb. 18, volunteers with the NBA will participate in the 14th annual NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service where they will sort and pack food donations at the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, and gently used books with the Kids' Book Bank Cleveland.
To address the COVID-19 pandemic in Cleveland, the NBA will be providing incentives to those who receive a COVID_19 vaccine or booster shot at sites throughout the city, including tickets to All-Star events and Cavs games, as well as other merchandise and items. Additionally, the league is donating 10,000 rapid antigen tests and 110,000 face makes to Cleveland's COVID-19 Task Force to distribute at local schools and community-based organizations. The league is also donating $100,000 to Cleveland's Funders Collaborative on COVID Recovery.
The NBA All-Star Weekend events will have a major focus on inclusivity and youth involvement, and will feature more than 130 diverse-owned businesses as part of the NBA Rewards Program that encourages fans to patronize said businesses for chances to score exclusive prizes, while also hosting a variety of virtual programming for local children and youth coaches leading up to the All-Star Game.
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