Posted By: Michael Cecchin
Over the last eight seasons Carmelo Anthony has proven that he is one of the best small forwards in the NBA. Since being drafted 3rd overall by the Denver Nuggets during the 2003 NBA Draft, Melo has averaged 20 or more points per game in each of his eight seasons; sits 3rd all-time in Nuggets Scoring; is a four-time NBA All-Star; and helped lead the Nuggets to a Western Conference Finals appearance. Like the man who was taken first overall in Carmelo’s draft class; LeBron James, Anthony immediately became a staple to the Nuggets organization. He became a franchise player and the face of the organization through his dominance on the court and sense of responsibility off it.
Aside from being a well-known figure in the NBA and having a top selling shoe as a member of Team Jordan, Anthony exemplifies the attributes of a positive role model through his hard work and commitment to his teammates, coaches and fans, while demonstrating the importance and relevance of community assistance and care for those less fortunate.
In 2005, the Carmelo Anthony Foundation was established as a tool in which Anthony could give back to the community through multiple outreach programs. By highlighting the importance of education, recreation and community outreach, the Carmelo Anthony Foundation works to positively impact and change the lives of those living in underserved communities. The Foundation hosts multiple charity events, fundraisers and support programs, which inspire the less fortunate to “Be More” than what their current surroundings and circumstances allow them to be.
Melo also assists in operating the Carmelo Anthony Youth Development Center located in Baltimore, Maryland. The Youth Development Center provides support for the educational and social development of disadvantaged youth, providing the opportunity to engage in various activities and programs. Many of the children come from public housing or low-income neighbourhoods which lack much of the services provided within prosperous neighbourhoods and communities. The development center provides service in five important areas: education and career development; character and civic development; health and life skills; the arts and cultural enrichment; and sports and recreation.
Anthony also gives back to where he came from as he presented a grant to his former home, Syracuse University, for a new basketball practice facility which opened September 24, 2009. Melo also blends basketball with giving as he teamed up with his former coach at Syracuse University, Jim Boeheim, and helped the Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation in creating Courts for Kids. With the help of sponsors, the joint program builds and refurbishes old basketball courts for kids in the disadvantaged socioeconomic areas of Syracuse and Puerto Rico.
Anthony’s work was recognized in 2006 when the premier philanthropic recourse for sports and entertainment, The Giving Back Fund, ranked Carmelo in their Top 10 of the Giving Back 30 report.
With Anthony recently being dealt to the New York Knicks, speculation of his desire to leave the city of Denver has left a dark cloud over his image for some people. The fact remains evident that Carmelo Anthony works hard to better the lives of those around him on and off the court. He is an athlete who should be admired for his pride in giving back just as much as he is admired for his game on the court.
To learn more about the Carmelo Anthony Foundation, visit http://www.carmelocares.org/carmelo-anthony-foundation