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- This Black History Month, the brand is announcing a series of ongoing initiatives focused on celebrating, uplifting and supporting Black women - starting with elevating stories of their lived experiences
- New community actions include an accelerator program for social entrepreneurs; a series of #adidas Community curriculums and mentorship opportunities; and an industry-changing design program for the next generation of creators
- Powered by its Impossible Is Nothing attitude, #adidas is accelerating its mission to create real, lasting change for historically underserved communities
In a continuation of the brand’s Impossible Is Nothing attitude – and its biggest ever commitment to women – #adidas is centering its Black History Month initiatives around celebrating, uplifting and supporting Black Women in sport, fashion and innovation.
“Again and again, we have seen Black women rise above – above the records, the barriers, and the confines of their respective fields,” explained Jamira Burley, #adidas Director of Social Impact Projects North America. “This month, #adidas is focused on elevating the stories of these women and accelerating their creative and athletic journeys in tangible ways.”
Brought to life through athlete partners like Kahleah Copper, #ericawheeler, Angel McCoughtry, #imanidorsey, Kendra Harrison and Sarah Nurse, this year’s Black History Month platform focuses on the representation of Black voices by spotlighting the real-life experiences of Black athletes. Meanwhile, sustained community programming and actions will offer Black women creators with real-life opportunities for education, mentorship and growth.
Among many long-term community initiatives that create more opportunities for Black girls and women, #adidas is deepening its commitment with the following programs launching this month and beyond:
- Cultivate & B.L.O.O.M (Building Legacies Out Of Movements) an #adidas Accelerator
- As a part of its commitment to create equity and access for the community, and in partnership with Impact Hub and Blavity.org, #adidas has created an accelerator program that aims to close the opportunity gap that exists for social entrepreneurs of color.
- This accelerator seeks to elevate, collaborate with and fund social entrepreneurs to create change in their communities to address the health, wealth, and access barriers to sport for Black and Latinx Communities. The first cohort, launching this spring, will focus specifically on Black women entrepreneurs in Los Angeles, New York City and Atlanta.
- S.E.E.D. (School for Experimental Education in Design) Program
- A strategic pipeline to welcome new talent into the brand and the industry, S.E.E.D. is a two-year program at the #adidas Brooklyn Creator Farm in partnership with Pensole Academy. The class of 2022 will be comprised of BIPOC female creators – with alum from the inaugural class of 2020 transitioning into roles at #adidas HQ.
- An alternative to a university education for Footwear Design, the program taps industry experts inside and outside of the #adidas brand to teach, guide, and mentor students in Leadership and Design skills by working on real products that will go to market.
- adidas Community Platform: adidas Community is a digital network for education, creative collaboration, and growth opportunities that pairs community members with community mentors. A sample of classes launching this month:
- Crowdfunding Decoded with Asha Grant: A course intended to demystify crowdfunding for Black and Brown entrepreneurs. To open her bookstore, Asha crowdfunded over $80,000 on GoFundMe—during the pandemic, no less. Now, she has developed a course that creates a space for aspiring entrepreneurs and educates them on crowdfunding basics, from available resources to tax information to social media marketing.
- Protect your Energy with Alli Simon: Developed with yoga and meditation facilitator Alli Simon, this course is an open invitation for each of us to come back to the self and use meditation to reconnect with our bodies and emotions. By adopting these everyday tools and practices, we can learn to better care for the self.
- Grassroots Leadership with ReeCee Hollans: An intimate lens into how sport and community intersect, with shared insights from #adidas Basketball’s Head of Grassroots and #adidas Legacy: a high school basketball platform – currently in 30 schools across North America - built for underrepresented communities and designed to unite, empower, and inspire the next generation of creators. Legacy hinges on the wisdom of coaches, united in their goal to inspire young men and women, that they may lift their communities to a better future.
In addition, adidas will continue to sustain it’s Honoring Black Excellence platform – a yearlong initiative celebrating the achievements of Black individuals, and Black culture as a whole. Throughout the year, we will highlight honorees from different sports, offering a platform to give back and share their stories. We kick off this month by celebrating and honoring our NCAA HBCU partners who have continued to invest in and build up their communities. Learn more at adidas.com/hbe.
Other ongoing programming and partnerships includes work with adidas Legacy, the Black Women’s Player’s Collective, U.S.Soccer Foundation, Beyoncé’s BeyGOOD foundation, Pharrell’s Black Ambition, United Negro College Fund scholarsships, Blavity.org Growth Fellowship, Appeitie for Change youth programming, Wood U in partnership with Pensole and the Iovine & Young Academy and Sound Labs - an initiative to foster creative collaboration, innovation and proactively support music programs in public schools lacking in financial support. Stay tuned as more information and updates on these programs will be shared throughout the year.
Through this month and every other month in the year, #adidas is committed to uplifting and supporting Black history and excellence.