Lebron Gives Back

PROMISE KEPT! …  Lebron James made a promise to the city of  Akron in Northeast Ohio when he announced he’d be coming home for the second time. His promise would consist of building a school for at-risk children in Akron . He also vowed that he would “bring a championship home to this city,” to FOX sports reporters back in 2014 which he did in the most epic way possible (but I’ll save that for a later time). Fast forward to the summer of 2018, July 30th was the opening of this state of the art facility for underprivileged children.

The spotlight has been nothing new for Lebron for years and it is only appropriate that this is his most highlighted accomplishment. Stationed in Lebron’s hometown, the school has been built for 240 students along with 43 staff members and is looking to hold all grades one through eight by the year 2022 per Bleacher Report.

This idea of building a school seemed “crazy” a few years ago Lebron told CNN  reporter Lemon in an elaborate sit down mid August. However, it has had nothing but positive outcomes for the community as a whole and the families that it is benefitting. This has all come out of a personal experience Lebron had when he was only in fourth grade! According to Cleveland.com,  James’ and his single mother Gloria had been faced with some hardships which had caused them to be in and out of friend’s houses. This resulted in Lebron ending up with nearly 80 absences on the year. As Lebron looked back at his past he felt the main cause of him missing so much instructional time was due to lack of structure in the classroom.

The start of the Ipromise school all started with a generous donation of $50,000 of Lebron’s own money to kickstart building and allow for longer school days per Complex.com. Although, this school is a public school it is not just any public school. The school days are eight hours instead of six which was designed in the hopes that less children would be in situations where they are unsupervised and vulnerable to the outside world. Not only is this school providing education for children but it is also giving jobs to parents in the community. To top it off, the main entrance is nothing short of mesmerizing as the walls act as display cases for game worn shoes of Lebron’s.

These shoes will later be auctioned off and all bids will be going into funding for the school.

The four time MVP is also the founder of the non profit foundation called the Lebron James Family Foundation. Established in 2003, right before Lebron entered the draft at 18 years old, him and his mom decided to establish this organization. 12 years later, they partnered with Akron University to provide free tuition for at-risk students who maintained a C average or greater Guidestar.com reported. In present day, the foundation is thriving and has been the sole contributor to the new school and is set donate 8 million in the coming months.    

All basketball opinions aside the students at HF seem to have agreed  that the Ipromise school is a great thing to have. Gretchen Mack stated “I think it will definitely benefit the community as it is providing more structure for its kids.” Julia Viscusi said “ forget about his championships this has been the greatest achievement in his career.” Lastly, Declan McDevitt feels that “this will pave the way for other athletes in sports to start giving back to their communities which is a great thing to see.”As the new school year is underway so is Lebron’s new season in LA. Even though he won’t be playing at Quicken Loans,  Cleveland Ohio will always his home.

Katherine Sheridan