The average American recognizes Memorial Day as unofficial national BBQ day. Fooducate.com says, “[Memorial Day] has come to signify the first long summer weekend, celebrated with sales at shopping malls and grand barbecues. In reality, Memorial Day is about honoring fallen soldiers and the NBA is on the forefront of not just bringing the BBQ but supporting the troops
NBA has a a dedicated fundraising, service, and outreach program, NBA Cares. Through this program they have education initiatives, health & wellness, and even support relief efforts in Nepal. Typically the events revolve around basketball.
Recently in the Phillippines, Philstar.com writer Denison Rey Dalupang did an article about three NBA stars giving back to fans in the Phillipines.
Although the clinics and showcase focused on dribbling drills and a few basketball tips and tricks, the primary goal is inspire kids and to incite change. Because when people believe in themselves, things start to happen. NBA Veteran Horace Grant who participated in the event said to the kids, “Keep believing in yourself. Keep believing in what you want to do.”
Hoops for Troops
Although the NBA Cares is the cornerstone of the league’s outreach efforts, they have dedicated a particular sector towards supporting the military.
Hoops for Troops “is a year-round initiative led by the NBA, its teams and players in collaboration with the Department of Defense, USO and other military and veteran serving organizations to honor active and retired service men and women and their families,” according to NBA.com.
The Detroit Pistons helped reunite a mother and son through the program.
The NBA has a calendar events for outreach target to veterans and military families around veteran’s day that includes visiting army medical centers, preparing care packages for overseas military personnel, and giving away game seats to military officials.
The league’s primary focuses is of course basketball, but through this programs they’ve made sure they don’t forget about the rest of the world.
Maybe you’ve seen the playstation commercial where you get an opportunity to play with celebrities.
It’s called playstation heroes, and I’m hoping that’s because as a result you get to be a hero and help save and support causes. Not because the celebrities are actually heroes like depicted in the commercial. Forbes did a write-up on the partnership between the NBA and Playstation, “which brings the league its first-ever sponsor to its NBA Cares Hoops for Troops platform.”
The collaboration began starting with a commitment to service initiative led by NBA commissioner Adam Silver.
Although the NBA has been doing outreach and community service, this particular program and partnership was specific towards military personnel and families and now has the support of Playstation.
On the hoops for troops site, it features #HowDoYouServe as a menu giving an opportunity for fans and participants of the game alike to get involved. Not only does it give you an opportunity to perhaps not pack in so many calories on memorial day, but they have associated contests with service.
If you tweet your service, to NBACARES and @playstation #howdoyouserve, “you Could Win NBA Regular Season Game Tickets or a PS4 System with NBA 2K15.”
The regular season is over, so I think ticket opportunities for this year has passed. However, don’t let that stop you from getting involved and giving back. There is always next year. You may play playstation already, and true “real gamers” go Xbox, but if you are a baller and a gamer pick up the sticks and support the troops.
Take some time away from the grill to appreciate the safety and freedoms that we as Americans enjoy as normalcy. Celebrate and honor those who have served and their families.
Happy Memorial Day!