As part of the NBA All-Star game celebrations, NBA Cares holds a week long event with current and former members of the NBA family. Collectively, the group works on local community projects to leave the area a little bit better than when they arrived. This year’s events included building playgrounds, fitness clinics for teens, and planting of community gardens.
OpSec was thrilled to participate in the NBA Cares ‘Day of Service’ last Friday, February 18th. Our day began at Franklin Douglas Elementary School in downtown Los Angeles. The crew, which consisted of approximately 200 people, helped the charter school in conjunction with an organization called KaBoom, to work on the most-needed projects. Our task was to build a large playground from scratch for the children of the school.
Some teams poured the concrete for the playground, others built the jungle gym and monkey bars, and still others worked on projects for the school’s interior. I came to LA with Jamie Chilcoat, our Master Planner who has supported the NBA program for the 20+ years he’s worked at OpSec. Jamie and I were assigned the job of building storage cubbies for classrooms. We worked alongside NBA stars Robert Horry and Derek Harper. The WNBA was also on hand along with Olympic runner Marion Jones.
Although the highlight of the week for many NBA fans was the All-Star game, the best moments for us were to be a part of giving back to the LA community. The playground we helped to build will be shared and prized by many families.
Just as the project was completed, a rare Los Angeles occurrence took place…it poured; we were soaked but the job was done. The sun came out again, and with it, an extra ray of brightness for the children at the Franklin Douglas School.