City continues partnership with National Basketball Players Association Foundation to offer scholarships to participants
NEW ORLEANS—On Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017, Mayor Mitch Landrieu will launch Season 16 of NOLA FOR LIFE Midnight Basketball. Additionally, in partnership with the National Basketball Players Association Foundation (NBPAF), Midnight Basketball will offer scholarship opportunities for Season 16 participants.
“Since 2012, NOLA FOR LIFE Midnight Basketball has impacted the lives of over 13,000 young people across New Orleans providing access to real opportunities,” said Mayor Mitch Landrieu. “I am thankful for our strong partners who continue to support the mission of connecting our young men to positive role models, community resources, jobs and educational opportunities. Together, we are helping to change the culture of violence in our city.”
This event will include remarks from CeaseFire New Orleans participant Tevin Butler. CeaseFire New Orleans is a NOLA FOR LIFE initiative that focuses on changing community norms about violence by mobilizing support services and the larger community to demand a change in behaviors that lead to shootings and killings.
Additionally, Midnight Basketball, in partnership with the NBPAF, will provide the second round of scholarships at the close of Season 16.
During the 2017 NBA All-Star Weekend, the NBPA Foundation made a scholarship commitment to Midnight Basketball of $50,000 per year for the next three years. The NBPA Foundation’s commitment will provide select Midnight Basketball participants the opportunity to attend industry-certified job training programs in New Orleans.
The first round of scholarships were awarded at the close of Season 15 to three participants: Cornell Parquet, Narvin Reed and Trenton Anderson. Parquet is using the scholarship funds to help pay for his tuition at Southern University of New Orleans. Reed is applying his scholarship toward acquiring his Information Technology credentials. Lastly, Anderson is using his scholarship toward his tuition at the University of New Orleans.
Executive Director of the NBPA Foundation Sherrie Deans said, “The three scholarship recipients from last season are such inspiring examples of how young men can benefit from Midnight Basketball and other NOLA FOR LIFE programs. We are so proud to continue our support of these programs, and we look forward to being part of the new season."
Deputy Mayor Judy Reese Morse said, “We are grateful for the support of our Midnight Basketball partners. The program’s continued success would not be possible without their commitment to creating access to opportunities for our young people.”
The winning team will earn Domino’s Pizza gift cards and tickets to an upcoming New Orleans Pelicans game.
Again this year, Midnight Basketball is partnering with New Orleans’ radio personality DJ Wild Wayne and PlayNOLA. The free seven-week season will continue Saturday nights, from Oct. 28 – Dec. 16, excluding Nov. 25, from 8 p.m. to midnight.
DJ Wild Wayne said, “What an amazing feat to be about to kick off the 16th season of Midnight Basketball! This Saturday night we look to engage a brand new group of young men - and some veteran players - from all over the Crescent City, in some competitive basketball and keep them in a safe environment! It's not JUST basketball, as we also have great guest speakers, job opportunities and even Domino's pizza! I look forward to hosting again this season...let the games begin!
Lavonzell Nicholson of PlayNOLA said, “We are grateful to partner with the City of New Orleans to coordinate this vitally important community project. We not only love watching the young men play basketball, but also see this as a way to support them in making smart, safe choices both on and off the court."
Midnight Basketball is a part of Mayor Landrieu’s comprehensive Murder Reduction Strategy, NOLA FOR LIFE and reaches young men who may be at risk of being impacted by violent crime in the city. Since its launch in January 2012, the program has given over 13,000 participants access to jobs, job training, education and other resources.
About NOLA FOR LIFE
Launched in May 2012, NOLA FOR LIFE is New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu's comprehensive strategy to tackle the city's historically high murder rate. Recognizing that law enforcement alone cannot solve the murder problem, NOLA FOR LIFE takes a holistic approach to get to the root of the problem and implements initiatives in five main categories: Stop the Shooting, Invest in Prevention, Promote Jobs and Opportunity, Strengthen the NOPD and Get Involved and Rebuild Neighborhoods. In the five years since NOLA FOR LIFE launched, there has been a 25% reduction in murder rate. For more information, visit www.nolaforlife.org and tune in to NOLA FOR LIFE original programming 24/7 on Cox Cable Channel 99.
In June 2016, the City of New Orleans released the NOLA FOR LIFE 2016 Four-Year Progress Report, which details why certain initiatives were selected, who they are reaching and the results they have produced. Click here to view the Progress Report.
About The National Basketball Players Association Foundation
The NBPA Foundation is the charitable arm of the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA), the union for current professional basketball players in the NBA. The Foundation provides strategic funding and support for players' community engagement initiatives worldwide. For more information about the Foundation, visit www.nbpafoundation.com