NEW ORLEANS, February 14, 2014 – American basketball star Chris Paul has become the newest Ambassador for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation. The Los Angeles Clippers’ point guard and NBA All-Star was in immediate action, visiting a school in New Orleans, where Laureus supports after-hours activities for disadvantaged young people.
Chris Paul said: “I will never forget how much of my success today I owe to my family and the fact that they supported me as I grew up and continue to support me and my wife and children today. Most important of all, I’m thinking of my grandfather. He taught me the values that have made me who I am today. Not everyone is lucky enough to have that person and this is why I am so passionate about giving back to young people who might be in need of someone to guide them through tough times. It’s this kind of work I’m so excited about taking on as I become a Laureus Ambassador.”
Paul was at the KIPP Central City Primary School in New Orleans, where his induction into the Laureus Family was announced. Laureus USA, along with partner Mercedes-Benz USA, already has deep roots within New Orleans, where over US$500,000 has been invested in the community over the past two years.
KIPP is part of the AfterSchool Zone programme, an initiative launched by Paul’s own CP3 Foundation, in 2010. It is a multi-year project which provides after-school support, including sport, language lessons and homework help.
Paul added: “My work with my own CP3 Foundation is a source of incredible pride. The CP3 AfterSchool Zone, that gives kids safe places to enjoy activities ranging from arts to sports, has shown me how important it is to give young people ways to make the most of themselves.”
Edwin Moses, Chairman of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, said: “It is an extraordinary honour to welcome world class athlete and fellow philanthropist Chris Paul to the Laureus Family. We are excited to join forces with Chris and look forward to working together to spread the word about how investing in quality sports-based youth development programmes can make an enormous impact in children’s’ lives.”
Based on his own successful childhood experiences with after-school basketball and extracurricular programmes, Paul knows first-hand how activities such AfterSchool Zone can help young people’s development. He wants youth in New Orleans to experience those same opportunities that helped shape him to be who he is today. Even though he no longer plays or lives in New Orleans, he has demonstrated his commitment to helping the community and is a role model for those who live there.
Paul joins an impressive list of current and former sportsmen and women around the world who support and promote the Laureus Sports for Good Foundation.
Members of the Laureus World Sports Academy and Laureus Ambassadors volunteer their time as global ambassadors for the Foundation, whose mission is to use sport as the means to combat some of the world’s toughest social challenges facing young people today such as juvenile crime, gangs, HIV/AIDS, discrimination, social exclusion, lack of education, landmines awareness and health problems such as obesity.
Since its inception Laureus has raised over €60 million and currently supports more than 140 community sports projects in 34 countries.