WNBA star Candace Parker has partnered with Gatorade and DICK’s Sporting Goods to donate $100,000 to The DICK’S Sporting Goods Foundation Sports Matter Program, which will cover registration fees for young athletes in disadvantaged communities.
In addition to the donation, Gatorade and the Foundation will be sending the girls’ basketball team from Arbor View High School in Las Vegas to the 2023 WNBA finals as a tribute to Parker.
“Leveling the playing field and creating new paths for participation in sports is crucial. Helping young athletes from diverse and underserved backgrounds not only participate but thrive in sport is something Gatorade and I both value, which is why I am thrilled that this Gatorade donation to The DICK’S Sporting Goods Foundation will continue breaking down barriers and empower players nationwide to achieve their goals this season,” the Aces star said in a statement.
As the mother of a daughter who plays volleyball and a longtime supporter of promoting equity in youth sports, Parker told Clutch Points that she is aware of the difficulties families face in paying for sports registration.
She expressed that being able to have athletes who aren’t limited because of finances participate in sports is very important. “It will help them not just make professionals. That’s not what the goal is necessarily, but to create good people,” she shared.
Kristen Garmey, the Director of Sports Matter at The DICK’S Sporting Goods Foundation, expressed that the donation will be game-changing for young students who have not been able to play sports due to high registration fees.
Also, young athletes from communities across the country will be able to join a team for the first time or support their upcoming season.