NBA Issues Second $3 Million Grant Program to Black Communities to Create Jobs and Career Development

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The National Basketball Association on Monday announced a new series of grants to community organizations to increase economic opportunity in the black community.

As part of his $300 million committed to helping underserved areas, the competition selected nine organizations, including New Heights Youth, City Year, Road to Hire, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Miami and CodeCrew of Memphis.

More than $3 million will be distributed in this funding round. The NBA said the money would support businesses in job creation and aid black people’s career development.

“The grants will amplify the important work of these national and local organizations and build on the NBA Foundation’s mission to provide skills training, mentorship, coaching and pipeline development for high school, college-age, job-ready and mid-career individuals in black communities in the United States and Canada,” according to the competition.

Last year, the NBA and its players’ union teamed up to create the NBA Foundation, which promises to help black people for the next 10 years. All 30 NBA clubs will unite to award $30 million annually for the next ten years as the league seeks to improve economic and income inequality.

“The NBA Foundation’s mission to drive economic empowerment for black communities through employment and career advancement is essential to the mobility and prosperity of future generations,” NBA Foundation Director Greg Taylor told CNBC via email. “We are excited to continue our work and honor our second round of grant recipients who are making a first-hand impact on their communities and individual lives.”

Pro-sports leagues sparked their interest in helping black communities in 2020 after high-profile murders involving police made headlines, including the death of George Floyd. Former Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin is on trial for his role in the murder of Floyd last May.

The NBA first issued grants to aid in education and employment last December. Organizations such as the Marcus Graham Project, Operation DREAM and Management Leadership for Tomorrow were selected to receive the funds.

Co-Owner Phoenix Suns Jahm Najafi added a $10 million donation to the foundation last month. The money comes in addition to the $10 million that the Suns have already pledged. Najafi is CEO of Arizona-based venture capital firm Najafi Companies.

Correction: Updated the headline of this story to reflect that this is the NBA’s second award.

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