One of the most crucial components of a community thriving is based upon resident’s desire to grow their village. For Los Angeles Clippers player Kawhi Leonard, that dream has been something deeply rooted in his voice of reason every day. The Clippers star has joined forces with area non-profit organization: Baby2Baby. With the help of both parties they’ve surpassed a goal of one million backpacks being donated to the Southern California community.


Kawhi Leonard enjoys sharing a backpack and smiles with a young student.
[Photo by LA Clippers]


One of Leonard’s main goals upon moving back to California was to have a more significant impact on his hometown and give back. Kawhi Leonard has always believed that when kids see a person from their community thriving, it gives the entire city a fresh new hope and a future. Leonard thinks that it shows the community that you can truly make it in life as they get to see a visual representation of someone who did it. Leonard has not played one game and is already changing the landscape for kids in the SoCal community. “Families struggle around this time of the year to get their kid’s school supplies, clothes, and backpacks. So to witness the Clippers and Baby2Baby provide one million backpacks is truly remarkable. I know how hard it is for parents and students to start the year. So hopefully, these backpacks are meaningful to the people who need them, said Kawhi Leonard.”

The beauty of giving back is that you might exceed the expectations that you had for yourself, as Leonard and Baby2Baby organization did. Though giving out backpacks and supplies to the children was the main incentive, they gave them something far more significant: A sense of belonging.


Los Angeles Clipper’s faculty and Kawhi Leonard enjoy a photo with students and their new gifted backpacks.
[Photo by LA Clippers]


Due to the lack of resources that many children have throughout the world, learning has become a greater difficulty for students. Many children aren’t prepared on their first day of school with all the things needed to be successful. With the help of the Los Angeles Clippers, Kawhi Leonard, and Baby 2 Baby Organization they’ve helped tackle that disparity. The Clippers President of Business Operations Gillian Zucker said, “There have been a lot of smiles on children’s faces this morning. It’s been an exceptional experience for any child starting the first day of school. You want to see that kind of enthusiasm and excitement about the idea that this year we’re going to succeed, said Zucker.”


Kawhi Leonard enjoys sharing a backpack and smiles with a young student.
[Photo by LA Clippers]


It was evident on each child’s face that they enjoyed the experience of being showered with gifts from basketball superstar Kawhi Leonard. The amount of joy that brightened up their smile could be seen a mile away. Though many children enjoyed the special showering of gifts, there was one that made an impact. Local student Aaron Madison got a chance to give a speech that blew everyone away. “That young man was absolutely extraordinary, and we were all saying it. I met his grandmother, and his mother, what a tremendous job they have done raising that young man. He stood in front of the crowd in a room full of celebrities and was able to deliver a speech like that. I think we will see him do great things, said Gillian Zucker.”

The most impressive part of brilliant young Madison’s speech is he demonstrated leadership. Aaron showed no fear of speaking to a large crowd while his peers and public figures were present. The beauty in public speaking is that when kids have these opportunities at a young age, it encourages them to think big and showcase their talents.
As Zucker stated, it is to stand up and be a role model for the youth. “If all of us can stand up and be an example, it is possible for young people. The NBA is a fascinating and broad platform to be able to showcase. All apart of giving back.”

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