A coalition of five Bay Area professional sports teams representing BAY AREA UNITE is joining forces with the Dr. Huey P Newton Foundation to rally community engagement and awareness for Black History Month.
"The Black Panther Party Celebration of Activism" virtual program will broadcast via Facebook Live and YouTube February 24th at 12:00 p.m. PST/3:00 p.m. EST. The event will feature a tribute to the "Black Panther Party 10 Program; What We Want, What We Believe," special performances and an exclusive look into Judas and the Black Messiah.
"Oakland has a deeply rooted history of activism around issues of justice and equity. We are proud to join the Dr. Huey P Newton Foundation and the other Bay Area sports teams for this important conversation celebrating Black History Month." says Dave Kaval, Oakland A's team president.
"The Warriors have a long-standing commitment to celebrate Black History Month, not just in February but year-round," said Warriors Vice President of Government and Community Relations, Yoyo Chan. "We are honored to participate in the Black Panther Party Celebration of Activism as we work to end racism and empower the community leaders around us."
"Bay Area Unite was formed as a way for us to collectively use our platform to influence positive change in our communities, tackle key social justice issues and create a more progressive, equitable, and supportive work environment for all. The 49ers and B.U.I.L.D. (Black Unity In Leadership and Development), which was established to bring together Black employees with the 49ers front office, are excited to join our fellow Bay Area teams for The Black Panther Party Celebration." – Justin Prettyman, Executive Director of The 49ers Foundation & B.U.I.L.D. member
"The legacy of the Black Panthers and their focus on food justice continues to inspire activism in the Bay Area. Because of the Panthers' support of school-based nutrition programs, our club learned about the importance and need in supporting young people in our communities through food justice programs. Their legacy and activism has helped inform the creation of our own food insecurity initiative — Pledge 74." – Rahul Devaskar, Director of Community Relations.
"Celebrating community and fighting for the civil rights of oppressed people of color have been central to the ethos of the Bay Area sporting community for decades thanks to the influence of the Black Panther Party. The fact that the demands of the 10 Point Program remain unfulfilled to this day is a devastating rebuke of the 'progress' of our society. However, seeing athletes and sport organizations in 2021 being inspired to continue the activist work that Huey P. Newton catalyzed inspires hope that we will one day see the more equitable society we all desire." – Jordan Ferrell, Technical Director, Oakland Roots SC.
According to Fredrika Newton, widow of Black Panther Party co-founder Huey Newton and Foundation founder/president: "Our goal with this event is to celebrate Black History Month through the lens of community activism. We are proud to partner with the athletes and their teams who do so much to support our communities."