He made a $10 million donation to Make-A-Wish America, a non-profit organization that supports children with critical illnesses.
We all know Michael Jordan as one of the best basketball players of all time, but it is not very often we learn about his philanthropic ventures. With a humble upbringing in Wilmington, North Carolina, he truly knows the value of money. He has amassed billions through his sports salaries, business endeavors and collaboration with Nike for Air Jordans. However, he also likes to give back to society. Jordan is celebrating his 60th birthday this year by making kids' wishes come true. On February 17, he made a $10 million donation to Make-A-Wish America, a non-profit organization that supports children with critical illnesses. Jordan's donation is the largest individual donation ever made in its 43-year history, reports GMA.
"The hope is for the record-setting donation to inspire others to "be like Mike" by helping make more wishes possible," said a spokesperson for Make-A-Wish, referring to Jordan's signature phrase from commercials with Gatorade. According to the Washington Post, Make-A-Wish aims to uplift and inspire children with illnesses and lauds Jordan for his "long-standing involvement." Since 1989, the NBA champion has become "one of the all-time most requested celebrity wish granters" and the foundation named Jordan as Chief Wish Ambassador in 2008. "For the past 34 years, it’s been an honor to partner with Make-A-Wish and help bring a smile and happiness to so many kids," said Jordan. "Witnessing their strength and resilience during such a tough time in their lives has truly been an inspiration."
His donation to Make-A-Wish will help fund the granting of wishes by children. Per the organization, any child older than 12 and younger than 18 is eligible for its help if he or she has been diagnosed with "a progressive, degenerative, or malignant condition that is placing the child’s life in jeopardy." Children don't have to have a terminal illness to qualify and many go on to lead healthy lives. Jordan, the owner of the Charlotte Hornets, is also a five-time MVP and 14-time all-star who won six championships with the Chicago Bulls and has earned series MVP honors. He also has won defensive player of the year and rookie of the year awards to complement his 10 scoring titles. His 30.1 career scoring average is the highest and helped Team USA win two Olympic gold medals.
“I can’t think of a better birthday gift,” Jordan noted, “than seeing others join me in supporting Make-A-Wish so that every child can experience the magic of having their wish come true.” Leslie Motter, president, and CEO of Make-A-Wish America applauded Jordon for his noble deed. "Everyone knows about Michael’s legacy on the basketball court, but it’s what he has consistently done off the court when no one’s watching that makes him a true legend for wish families and the wider Make-A-Wish community." She added, "Michael using his birthday as a chance to make history for Make-A-Wish speaks to the quality of his character and his loyal dedication to making life better for children with critical illnesses. We hope that the public will be inspired to follow in his footsteps by helping make wishes come true."
Michael Jordan is celebrating his upcoming 60th birthday with a $10M donation to Make-A-Wish!— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) February 15, 2023
"I can't think of a better birthday gift than seeing others join me in supporting @MakeAWish so that every child can experience the magic of having https://t.co/eJq0bJCalp… https://t.co/Pb7oT3VSpO pic.twitter.com/Kt4mMG5TTT
Katie Dankowski, then 11, met the NBA legend in 2000 while receiving treatment for a brain tumor. Jordan's grant of her wish inspired her and she currently resides in Virginia Beach, Virginia, to work for her local Make-A-Wish after completing her medical treatment and graduating from college. Make-A-Wish was created in 1980 by a group of individuals in Phoenix, Arizona, who came together to help a 7-year-old boy with leukemia who wanted to be a police officer.