by Frances Esguerra
Led by Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins and rapper Meek Mill at the invitation of Mayor Jim Kenney, the NFL Player’s Coalition hosted a town hall meeting early this month to discuss criminal justice in Philadelphia ahead of the hiring of the city’s next commissioner. The main topic of conversation at this town hall were the dynamics between residents and law enforcement amid the recent resignation of Philadelphia’s Police Department Commissioner Richard Ross. Ross stepped down from his position in light of allegations that members of his department engaged in sexual harassment and racial and gender discrimination against two women serving in the ranks.
Jenkins and Mill hope to bridge the relationship between residents and law enforcement, a gap that seemed to widen amidst the allegations against the PPD. “This is the time we need to use our voices the loudest and make sure that we hold [the mayor] accountable to what we want,” Jenkins stated, “and that this new person is going to come in and make a cultural shift.”
This is just one example of NFL Players’ Coalition’s on-going efforts in social justice. The Coalition has taken up several initiatives in various markets in hopes positively influencing social justice reform. About a week ago Jenkins and the Coalition also partnered with Roc Nation to launch the first public service announcement of the Responsibility Program, which will include a series of announcements focused on parents whose children were victims of police brutality and gun violence.
Why We Like It:
Malcolm Jenkins and Meek Mill are using their platform to encourage social change for the better. As two people who call Philadelphia home, they are making an effort to hold their neighborhoods’ leadership accountable. Their willingness to speak to the public and encourage discussion on difficult topics is admirable and necessary for positive change. Similarly, the Players’ Coalition, co-founded by Jenkins, is an excellent example of influential individuals joining forces to make an impact. Together, this group of motivated ambassadors can reach their common goal more efficiently as they all do their part in holding each other and their hometowns accountable.
by Frances Esguerra
Former NFL linebacker Bart Scott and former NBA forward Antoine Walker continue to share their experiences with and talk to young athletes about financial literacy and money management skills. Through Edyoucore Sports & Entertainment, Scott and Walker have been able to share their stories with thousands of young athletes in hopes of helping them avoid the same serious financial issues that they had encountered during their own time as NFL and NBA players.
Founded by former Morgan Stanley Global Sports & Entertainment (GSE) division Managing Director Drew Hawkins, Edyoucore Sports & Entertainment offers in-person and digital advising sessions on necessary topics like credit, taxes, savings and retirement. With Scott and Walker’s passion for the subject matter, Educore’s curriculum enhances participants’ decision-making capabilities through interactive and engaging lessons.
Scott, a 10-year NFL veteran, and Walker, a 13-year NBA veteran, had both experienced financial problems during their time as professional athletes. Edyoucore has given them a platform to share their experiences with gambling debts, bankruptcy and general frivolous spending.
Why We Like It:
Many young athletes enter the sports and entertainment world without any much-needed foundational financial education. Most come from modest upbringings and poor neighborhoods that did not prepare them for the wealth they are to experience as professional sports players. With much more money than most know what to do with, these athletes jeopardize the longevity of their wealth through poor decision-making and impulsivity. Educore helps young athletes build secure futures well beyond their sports careers and encourages them to smartly invest in themselves as well as philanthropies they are passionate about, the way that Scott and Walker do now.
Women Win and Skateistan have partnered to launch a new initiative called ROLL Models to empower a generation of female leaders in Europe through skateboarding. The project is designed to bring the physical, mental and emotional benefits of sports to a whole generation of young women. Its main focus is to ensure that women of color, refugees and women living with disabilities are directly involved in the programming. Skateistan will contribute through its Goodpush program, which supports the social skate sector worldwide through skateboarding and creative education programs for children and youth.
Operating in Germany, the Netherlands and Greece, ROLL Models is designed to develop 72 female youth leaders between the ages of 15 and 30 through skateboarding sessions, intense leadership training and seed funding over the course of three years. These young women will in turn support and develop social skateboarding projects for 900 girls, inspiring younger girls to follow a similar path.
Why We Like It:
With the current generation of European girls and women being the least active ever, only 10-20% of adolescent girls meet the recommended level of physical activity. Women Win and Skateistan’s joint effort aims to reach this demographic and address the increased mental health issues linked to lack of exercise and participation in sports. The ROLL Models initiative empowers women to actively direct their own futures by encouraging physical activity and health while promoting their mental and emotional health to be inspirational leaders for the young women that come after them.
With the help of the Pincus Family Foundation, global non-profit love.fútbol has extended its global mission to North America with the completion of the partnership’s first soccer pitches in the U.S. This past week, the two partners unveiled two new community sport spaces at Philadelphia’s Dr. Tanner G. Duckrey Schoolyard and James Finnegan Playground as “positive, safe, inclusive and necessary” play areas for children in under-resourced communities.
After opening their first site in Xico, Mexico, and now their second and third in Philadelphia, the two organizations are more than halfway through their goal in reclaiming and revitalizing spaces into places where kids can play and learn lasting life skills through sport. love.fútbol and the Pincus Family Foundation will continue their joint effort to unite communities through soccer with the opening of two more sites in the Dominican Republic this month and in early 2020, all supported by a $1.1 million grant provided by the Pincus Family Foundation.
Why We Like It:
love.fútbol and the Pincus Family Foundation’s efforts show what good can happen through the collaboration of two entities dedicated to the betterment of society. Their commitment to improving the well-being of local residents is unmistakable as they invest in the communities’ future through their children. The sport spaces created by love.fútbol and the Pincus Family Foundation can not only inspire the communities that immediately benefit from them, but also inspire organizations to unite and propel each other’s charitable goals further and faster than they would on their own.