NBA to sell face masks covered with team logos to raise money for food banks in the US and Canada
- The NBA will begin selling team-emblazoned face coverings with proceeds going to food bank networks across the United States and Canada
- The masks are not intended to replace safety precautions, like social distancing
- They will be sold individually, for $14.99, or in packs of three for $24.99
- All 30 NBA teams and the 12 WNBA clubs will be offering the masks to fans
- Fanatics, one of the NBA’s apparel merchandise partners, is making the masks
- Hornets center Bismack Biyombo is donating $1 million worth of medical supplies to his native Congo as the country faces its own coronavirus outbreak
- Learn more about how to help people impacted by COVID
Basketball fans can now support their favorite team while protecting themselves from coronavirus because the NBA is offering face coverings, featuring all 30 team logos as well as the 12 WNBA clubs’, with proceeds going to food bank networks in the United States and Canada.
While the masks are not medical-grade, like the N95 models that are sorely needed by healthcare workers around the world, they can still be useful to fight the spread of COVID-19. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recently recommended that cloth face coverings be worn in public and washed frequently between uses.
The NBA is launching this program through a partnership with the sports apparel brand Fantatics, which is chaired by Philadelphia 76ers co-owner Michael G. Rubin.
The face coverings come in adult and child sizes, but the they are not intended to replace safety precautions, such as hand washing and social distancing. They will be sold individually, for $14.99, or in packs of three for $24.99.
The NBA will begin selling team-emblazoned face coverings with proceeds going to food bank networks across the United States and Canada. The masks are not intended to replace safety precautions, like social distancing. They will be sold individually or in packs of three for $24.99
The two charities that will receive the funds are Feeding America, a nation-wide network of food banks in the US, and Second Harvest, which emphasizes environmental protection while redistributing unsold food to over 1,200 organizations in Canada.
‘As a global community, we can all play a role in reducing the impact of the coronavirus pandemic by following the CDC’s recommendation to cover our nose and mouth while in public,’ said NBA president for social responsibility Kathy Behrens. ‘Through this new product offering, NBA and WNBA fans can adhere to these guidelines while joining in the league’s efforts to aid those who have been directly affected by COVID-19.’
Katie Fitzgerald, the executive vice president and chief operating officer at Feeding America, explained that the coronavirus outbreak has drastically impacted food banks.
‘The COVID-19 pandemic has upended food bank operations causing shifts in distribution models and volunteer opportunities,’ said Fitzgerald. ‘We are grateful to the NBA, WNBA and Fanatics for this partnership that will support food banks with funds but also with much needed face coverings to keep their staff, volunteers and neighbors in need safe.’
‘This support will help Second Harvest redistribute enough food to provide millions of meals to Canadians over the coming months,’ Second Harvest CEO Lori Nikkel said.
Charlotte Hornets center Bismack Biyombo (pictured) is donating $1 million worth of medical supplies to his native Congo as the country faces its own coronavirus outbreak after years of battling other deadly diseases, such as malaria and Ebola
In a similar move, Fanatics announced last mont that it has suspended production on baseball jerseys, instead using the polyester mesh fabric to make masks and gowns for hospitals in Pennsylvania and nearby states.
Rubin, who also owns the NHL’s New Jersey Devils, said he had the blessing of MLB commissioner Rob Manfred to transition away from jerseys and begin making masks.
Meanwhile Charlotte Hornets center Bismack Biyombo is donating $1 million worth of medical supplies to his native Congo as the country faces its own coronavirus outbreak after years of battling other deadly diseases, such as malaria and Ebola.
‘We have never experienced a crisis of this magnitude,’ Biyombo said in a video posted on Instagram. ‘Seeing my home country suffer in this capacity is devastating.
‘I’ve spent the last few weeks trying to figure out a way to help those suffering in the DRC,’ he continued. ‘I am pleased to announce that The Bismack Biyombo Foundation delivered over 10,000 masks and 780 hazmat suits to the DRC this week.’