Dwyane Wade Receives Honors from NBA for Charity Work

1 Nov

Courtesy of NBA.com

The NBA has named Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade the recipient of the NBA Cares Community Assist Award for the 2010 offseason in recognition of his outstanding efforts in the community and his ongoing philanthropic and charitable work. This marks Wade’s third NBA Cares Community Assist Award — he previously received an award in 2004 and again in 2007.

The NBA is honoring Wade for his support of youth and families in his hometown of Chicago and in Miami, including his efforts that raised nearly $800,000 in charitable donations during the 2010 offseason. Wade tipped off the summer by hosting 700 Chicago-area boys and girls at his sixth annual basketball camp. He worked with the group on basketball fundamentals while emphasizing the importance of staying active and being healthy. The following month, he co-hosted the 2010 Summer Groove with NBA Legend Alonzo Mourning in Miami. The annual five-day charitable event featured a variety of activities, including the Summer Groove Youth Empowerment Summit, and it benefitted both Wade’s World Foundation and Alonzo Mourning Charities. The Youth Empowerment Summit, a highlight of the event, provided local teens with the opportunity to discuss their daily challenges with a panel of community leaders, athletes, celebrities, and business professionals.

In September, Wade returned to Chicago to host the fourth annual Wade’s World Weekend. This four-day benefit featured a series of events designed to create new opportunities for thousands of disadvantaged Chicago youths and families. Events included a school supply giveaway for hundreds of underprivileged youngsters and a Youth Summit, during which Wade and his guests spoke to Chicago teens about the importance of education and giving back to the community. Wade also presented a $100,000 donation to the Lighthouse Youth Center, a state-of-the-art facility in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood that offers classes in creative writing, healthy cooking, music, world cultures, and more.

“One of the best things about being a professional athlete is our ability to give back,” Wade said. “There is so much need out there, and I really enjoy doing my part by supporting communities and families in my hometown of Chicago, the city of Miami, and beyond.”

Wade’s charitable efforts are not confined just to the United States.

Following the devastating earthquake in Haiti in January, Wade co-founded the “Athletes Relief Fund for Haiti,” which has raised $2 million to help provide much-needed medical supplies and essentials to Haitian children and families. In addition, Wade continues to make a difference year round through his Wade’s World Foundation, which he and his family launched in 2003. The organization provides support to community-based organizations that promote education, health, and social skills for at-risk youth.

As an NBA Cares Community Assist Award recipient, Wade will receive the David Robinson Plaque with the inscription, “Following the standard set by NBA Legend David Robinson who improved the community piece by piece.” In addition, the NBA will donate $5,000 to the Wade’s World Foundation on Wade’s behalf.

The league presents the NBA Community Assist Award monthly throughout the season and once following each offseason to recognize players for their year-round charitable efforts. The award honors the NBA player who best reflects the passion that the league and its players have for giving back to their communities.

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