Basketball star Jeremy Lin has pledged up to $1 million to help fight COVID-19 on Monday.
The 31-year-old former NBA athlete, who now plays in the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA), is set to donate $500,000 in the pandemic relief efforts.
Announcing his COVID-19 campaign called #BeTheLight, Lin posted a video on his Instagram account to ask for support from his followers and noted he is willing to match all donations for up to an additional $500,000.
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I NEVER EVER make post these types of videos but times are different. Im launching a COVID-19 campaign called #BeTheLight where I’ll be donating $500,000 and matching an additional $500,000. But it isnt about my donation which isnt even a drop in the bucket for what the world needs. We need unity! Aside from money theres other ways to get involved (my @playerstribune article in IG story, donation link in bio). Tbh I don’t blame anyone who has bitterness, confusion, anger or hate. Thats normal. My hope is we all recognize and sit with those emotions, but I also pray that bitterness turns to heartache which turns to empathy which ultimately turns to action! Imagine the person in the hospital bed struggling to breathe. Imagine the person who cant even see their loved one fighting for their life. Imagine the person grindin day and night as a frontline worker tremendously at risk. Who can’t go home and see their family and children fearing to infect them. Imagine the person who can’t sleep at night because there’s no food for their next meal. Who can’t provide food for their children. Imagine the person whose small business and lifelong dream shut down. Imagine the person who is fighting depression and suicide due to the lockdown. Try to imagine all those hurting in ways we don’t even know about. Lets put ourselves in others shoes, but thats not enough. We must step up and help now! #BeTheLight 💡 p.s. I didnt put it at the end of the article but when this is all said and done, in n out on me! ❤️
“This is a tough time for everybody. We need to unite. We need everybody to be a part of the solution,” Lin said in the short clip.
In an interview with NextShark, Lin revealed that he will be donating $250,000 to nonprofit Feeding America and $250,000 to Direct Relief. The additional $500,000 in matching grants will go to Feeding America, Direct Relief and a few other organizations that he and his foundation are identifying now.
“I picked two amazing organizations that are actively working on COVID-19 responses,” Lin told NextShark. “I looked for organizations that have strong track records of working on some of the biggest needs that have arisen: Feeding America is addressing the huge numbers of people that will be at risk of experiencing hunger and Direct Relief is providing personal protective equipment for healthcare workers.”
This new batch of donations will be in addition to the $300,000 he donated last month. Back in March, Lin also donated $150,000 to Jeremy’s Foundation through his non-profit The Jeremy Lin Foundation and $150,000 to UNICEF.
While waiting for the CBA games to resume in May, Lin shared that he is still able to continue working out in the gym.
“I’ve been lucky to be able to continue my workout and training routine in Beijing,” he said. “I don’t take a moment of hooping for granted, especially when I think about how many people I care about are currently sheltering in place.”
Featured image via Jeremy Lin