BHM celebrates the athletes and African-American youth leaders who are harnessing the power of sport and making a positive change in their communities.
Meet the members of the Future Varsity program – a six-month program created to support leaders in African-American communities using sport to inspire change.
Mekhi Fields and Muhammad Hogue—juniors on Newark, NJ’s Eagle Academy basketball team—adopted an elementary school across town in order to create a safe space for development and mentoring. Empowered by the Eagle Academy’s motto, “It’s easier to build strong children than repair broken men,” Mekhi and Muhammad embrace their role as leaders in the community.
“Our neighborhood is rough, so there is a lot of obstacles to success. When others are on the corner, I am at practice. Without basketball, I don’t know what I’d be doing. Basketball is life,” explains Muhammad. Mekhi adds,“Growing up in this environment made me stronger, I didn’t have all the things other people did but we try to be big brothers of our neighborhood. There are little kids that looks up to us.”
“I want to be better than I was the day before.”– Mekhi Fields + Muhammad Hogue
Find out more about the other Youth Leaders that are using sport to promote change within their communities.
Future Varsity is a program designed to support, empower and enable youth leaders who are using sport to stand up for values, of equality, diversity and inclusion in their communities. We invite you to submit nominations for the next program.
Log in or create a NikePlus account to nominate a youth leader you know using sport to elevate their community.
Nike is proud to support numerous national and local organizations that provide services to underrepresented youth, including African-American youth, during the year, through mentorship, leadership development, coaching, city league sport programs, and other community initiatives.
The leading national organization in ensuring quality youth mentoring relationships, Nike has supported MENTOR to raise the profile of mentoring and expand into new parts of the U.S., connecting more volunteers to mentoring opportunities in their local communities.
Since 2017, PeacePlayers, with Nike’s support, has established programs in Brooklyn, Baltimore, Chicago, Detroit and Los Angeles bringing young people together through the power of sport.