The National Basketball Association (NBA) will begin a series of grassroots community, youth basketball and elite development events and programmes to impact thousands of young people, teachers, coaches and families across Mumbai ahead of The NBA India Games 2019, the association announced on Monday.
The first-ever NBA game in India will be played in front of 3,000 youth from participating Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA schools, when the Kings and Pacers take the court on October 4 at the Dome, NSCI, SVP Stadium in Mumbai.
Continuing and expanding the initiatives ahead of The NBA India Games, the NBA, Pacers and Kings will support five under-resourced municipal schools in and around Mumbai, including Sitaram Mill Compound Marathi BMC School, where league and team executives and former NBA players will break ground on a new basketball court on October 5. In partnership with the American India Foundation (AIF), this joint Legacy Project will transform the educational experience for hundreds of Mumbai’s most underserved students.
Students and teachers will have access to new Smart Classrooms, STEM Resource Centers and a Robotics Lab outfitted with new technology, digital STEM curriculums and training, and improved infrastructure for school facilities, as well as the newly-constructed basketball court. Additionally, Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA programmes will be launched at each school for both boys and girls.
“Our mission is to use basketball as a platform for good and we are thrilled to partner with the American India Foundation to invest in the education and growth, both physically and mentally, of youth in India,” said Kings Chairman, CEO and Governor Vivek Ranadivé.
“I believe in the transformative power of sports and it is a tremendous honour to help bring the game to the country where I was raised as the NBA continues to expand its reach in India and across the globe,” he added.
“We are excited to partner with the American India Foundation to support the health, wellness and education of underserved youth in Mumbai,” said Pacers Chairman, CEO and Governor Herb Simon.