All of the students come from low-income families.
Los Angeles Clippers small forward/shooting guard Kawhi Leonard is getting himself reacclimated into his hometown, and what better way to introduce yourself to the City of Angels franchise than giving back to local children. The basketball team and Leonard partnered with the non-profit Baby2Baby in an effort to donate one million backpacks to lower-income families, according to NBA.com. They will target specific areas in Southern California including Inglewood, Los Angeles, and Moreno Valley Unified School Districts. It's reported that every single student in those districts will be given a new backpack at the beginning of the school year.
Leonard and Baby2Baby Ambassadors Nicole Richie, Busy Phillips, and Zooey Deschanel all came together at Cloverdale Elementary School in Moreno Valley for the heart-warming event. “My goal this year is to make a meaningful contribution both on and off the court," Leonard said. "This felt like the right way to get started. It was important to me to make this announcement in my hometown of Moreno Valley at my former Elementary School, but the benefits this program will have across all of Los Angeles makes today even more special."
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Baby2Baby Presidents Kelly Sawyer Patricof and Norah Weinstein expressed their gratitude, noting that this is more than just giving kids a free item. “For many of these children who are homeless or in foster care, backpacks not only hold their school books and homework, but also all of their personal belongings," Sawyer Patricof said. "If they have a backpack at all, it is often falling apart, and when a child does not have one, they resort to using a grocery or trash bag. The Clippers' donation will make these children feel the pride they deserve and give them the confidence they need to start the school year off on the right foot.” Check out a few photos from the event below.