When the Nike Detroit Community Store opened its doors on May 26, 2016, it did much more than bring a new retail destination to downtown Detroit. It created a relationship with its community, thanks in part to grants given through the Nike Community Impact Fund.
The Detroit Community Store is one of six Nike Community Stores across the nation to offer $40,000 in annual grants to eight local nonprofit groups. Other Nike Community Stores are located in downtown Detroit, South Chicago, New Orleans, Ivy City in Washington D.C., the Flatbush neighborhood in Brooklyn and East Los Angeles. In total, Community Store teams across the U.S. will award $240,000 each year in their communities via the Nike Community Impact Fund in partnership with CAF America and The Oregon Community Foundation.
Kris Young, Nike’s VP and GM of North America Factory Stores, loves the community synergy that’s developed and the store’s ability to make meaningful local connections. “Our Community Stores teams are passionate about service, and the Nike Community Impact Fund is one great way we serve and invest in our local communities. Whether it’s through the NCIF or the many volunteer hours the team devotes every month, giving back is at the core of our Nike Community Store concept.”
In Detroit and other Community Store cities, Nike store employees — known as store athletes — are directly involved with the Nike Community Impact Fund, both in the grant-making process and the resulting projects. A committee of local Nike employees review applications and develop grant recommendations. Nike Community Store employees continue their involvement by volunteering their time and sharing their professional experience to help the selected nonprofits achieve their objectives.
Tim Carroll, head coach of the Detroit Community Stores, notes the top priority for his store’s grant committee: “We want to focus on organizations that are striving to make physical activity, play and sport a highly valued part of everyday life for young athletes in the Detroit area. The eight organizations selected have strong plans in place to either support a current program or create a new program to increase their impact.”
One of the recipients for the Detroit Community Store’s inaugural grants is the Boys and Girls Club of Southeastern Michigan, which is devoted to guiding and supporting children ages 6-18 in five core areas: the arts; character and leadership development; education and career development; health and life skills; and sports, fitness and recreation. With their grant they’ll create a co-ed basketball league for children at the club.
“We are very grateful to our local Detroit Community Store, The Nike Community Impact Fund and CAF America for their support of our co-ed basketball league,” says Patrice Dickens, Club Director, Boys & Girls Club of Southeastern Michigan-Lloyd H. Diehl Club. “At the Boys & Girls Club, we want our kids to succeed. Through the co-ed basketball team, we’ll be able to provide even more opportunities for our youth to participate in a structured environment that will help them develop skills, increase fitness, learn strategy and practice good sportsmanship.”
“Our store athletes already have a strong relationship with this Boys and Girls Club, spending a few days a week there. During the afterschool program, they lead young athletes in games and activities from the Nike Community Ambassador Quick Reference Guide,” says Carroll. “We’re excited to deepen our connection with them through this new grant.”
Given its success, Nike is expanding the Nike Community Impact Fund to Europe. Employees at Nike’s European Headquarters in Hilversum, Netherlands and European Logistics Center in Laakdal, Belgium, will help direct more than $350,000 of Nike’s community investments in Europe. The first round of grants for these cities will be announced in 2017.
NIKE COMMUNITY IMPACT
Nike believes in the power of sport to move the world and unleash human potential. However, the world is moving less and less, and today's generation of children is the least physically active ever. That’s why Nike works to get kids (ages 7-12) active early and for life, because active kids are happier, healthier and more successful. Together with its employees, partners, consumers and athletes, Nike also supports important causes which strengthen communities across the globe. Learn more.