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Memphis Grizzlies Foundation to donate more than $500,000

Memphis Grizzlies Foundation to donate more than $500,000 in grants to mentoring and youth development programs across mid-south

Memphis Grizzlies || October 5, 2021 2:00 PM CDT

Memphis, Tennessee— The Memphis Grizzlies Foundation today announced the donation of more than $500,000 in grants to organizations across the Mid-South that are focused on mentoring and youth development. The grants will be presented tonight, during the Grizzlies vs. Milwaukee Bucks preseason game at 7 p.m. at FedExForum.

This year’s distribution of grants brings the total given by the Grizzlies Foundation to Mid-South non-profit organizations to over $53.6 million since 2001. The Memphis Grizzlies Foundation is dedicated to harnessing the power of sport to transform lives, specifically focused on finding and funding youth mentoring and development programs to help young students better understand their potential.

Through the Grizzlies Foundation, MENTOR Memphis Grizzlies (MMG) strives to unite local community organizations and civic leaders to promote, support and advocate for youth mentoring while providing resources, leadership and training to support programs that support youth. Organizations receiving grants tonight are all MMG member organizations who demonstrate best practice mentoring by meeting the benchmarks outlined in the Elements of Effective Practice for Mentoring, MENTOR’s cornerstone publication that details its standards for creating and sustaining quality youth mentoring programs and ultimately enhancing their impact.

“We know firsthand the power of mentorship and how it helps propel our youth to great things in the Memphis Community and beyond,” said Abusheri Ohwofasa, Memphis Grizzlies Vice President of Community Engagement and Executive Director of the Memphis Grizzlies Foundation. “The 15 grantees this year are lifting up our youth and putting them on a path to greatness through so many avenues, from dance to technology to education and more. It is our honor each year, through the Memphis Grizzlies Foundation, to provide much needed resources to such deserving organizations.”

Each grant is uniquely designed in an effort to support organizations in select areas of their programs such as an expansion of established programs to under-served areas, program enhancements for established quality mentoring programs, professional development for youth and mentoring practitioners and first-year implementation of new adult-to-youth mentoring programs. A list of MMG Members receiving grants is below:

Program Expansion

  • Grizzlies Prep

Program Enhancement

  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mid-South

  • City Year of Memphis

  • CodeCrew

  • Indie Memphis

  • JIFF, Inc.

  • LITE Memphis

  • New Ballet Ensemble

  • Reach Memphis

  • Streets Ministries

  • Youth Villages

Professional Development

  • Beautiful Spirited Women (BSW)

  • Freeman Outreach Center

  • Memphis Bears Inc. PAL

First-Year Implementation

  • World Relief Memphis

For more information on the Memphis Grizzlies Foundation and MENTOR Memphis Grizzlies, visit


MENTOR Memphis Grizzlies (MMG) is an affiliate of MENTOR National, the unifying champion for expanding quality mentoring relationships in the United States. MMG serves as a clearinghouse for training, resources, awareness, and advocacy, providing the critical link between MENTOR’s national efforts and local organizations and programs that foster and support quality mentoring relationships.

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