For the second consecutive year, the San Francisco 49ers have been named a finalist for the Sports Humanitarian Team of the Year Award, presented by ESPN. The second annual Sports Humanitarian of the Year Awards will celebrate and honor athletes, teams, non-profits and members of the sports industry for using sport to serve communities and make a positive impact on society.
The event, which will take place Tuesday, July 12 from 6:30 p.m. – 9 p.m. PT at the Conga Room at L.A. Live, will bring together the leagues and sporting community to pay tribute to the collective good of sports. Highlights of the evening will be featured during a 30-minute special on ESPN, July 15 at 7 p.m. ET.
At the heart of the 49ers philanthropic efforts is their mission to keep kids “Safe, On Track, and In School,” as illustrated by their deep commitment to the San Francisco 49ers Academy, a middle school for underserved students in East Palo Alto. The team has supported the Academy from top to bottom with grants; player, alumni, ownership and staff involvement; mentorships; and facility enhancement. Inclusive of the contributions to the 49ers Academy, since 1992, the Foundation has donated $34.6 million to support nonprofits, contributing $4 million in 2015.
Headquartered in the center of Silicon Valley in Santa Clara, the San Francisco 49ers are seeking to improve STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education for children throughout the Bay Area. As such, the 49ers Foundation strategically created two distinct programs: The first — 49ers STEM Education Program at the 49ers Museum — annually provides a free day of STEM learning for 60,000 students through a common core-aligned science of football curriculum. The second — the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute (SLI) — is a six-year program that delivers more than 300 hours of supplemental STEM education to 60 students in grades 7-12 each year.
Launched in 2014 as part of the Foundation’s education efforts, the 49ers STEM Leadership Institute is a collaborative education venture that each year welcomes to the program 60 new high-achieving 7th graders at the Chevron STEMZONE at Cabrillo Middle School in Santa Clara, Calif. The program exposes students to a rigorous curriculum of science, technology, engineering and math, strengthening their skills to prepare them for eventual entry to top-tier colleges in STEM fields and STEM careers. In July 2016, the program – currently serving 120 students – will expand to Santa Clara High School (SCHS) and, at full capacity in 2019, will serve 350 students from 7th through 12th grade.
Each of the last five years, every player on the San Francisco 49ers participated in at least one charitable event. The organization, including 49ers players, coaches, ownership, staff, and alumni donates thousands of hours of volunteer time to more than 130 community events and activities in the Bay Area each year, impacting more than 30,000 children. During the season, players are in the community every week, directly interacting with youth and families in need through hands on service events. From reading books to kindergarteners to running youth football camps, serving meals to homeless families to delivering toys to critically ill children in time for the holidays, hosting Make-A-Wish youth, building homes with Habitat-for-Humanity, promoting the importance of leadership, scholarship, and a healthy lifestyle, speaking up against gang membership, and so much more, 49ers players are actively engaged in improving the lives of those facing challenges.
In recognition of their tremendous commitment to philanthropy, the San Francisco 49ers were named the winners of the Beyond Sport 2015 Sport Team of the Year and the 2013 winners of the prestigious Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Steve Patterson Award for Sports Philanthropy.