BROOKLYN – For a second year, the Brooklyn Nets will participate in Nike’s NBA Game Growers program, a unique and empowering opportunity for girls 13 years or older in seventh or eighth grade to work alongside the team to develop ideas on how to encourage more girls in their local community to play sports.
As part of the Game Growers program, two girls from the New York City area will be selected to develop an idea to grow sports participation for girls, and serve as Co-Captains of the Nets’ Game Growers team. Once selected, the girls will collaborate and work alongside Nike and the Nets’ Game Growers team to create a plan to implement and test their idea, and ultimately increase their peers’ involvement in sports in New York City. These plans – known as Game Growers Game Plans – will be shared on Nike’s Game Growers website in Spring 2021.
Interested individuals can visit www.GameGrowers.com to learn more and apply to participate in the program. Applications are currently open and will be accepted until midnight on Dec. 4. Game Growers participants will be selected and notified by Jan. 15, 2021.
“We are proud to team with Nike again on the Game Growers program, which reaches girls at such a pivotal point in their engagement with sports,” said Mandy Gutmann, Senior Vice President of Communications and Community Relations, BSE Global. “I know firsthand the crucial role that sports can play in developing core life skills such as resilience, teamwork, and confidence, and we hope this program inspires the next generation of female leaders both on and off the court.”
By age 14, girls are dropping out of sport at twice the rate of boys. According to a 2018 study from the Women’s Sports Foundation, nearly 40 percent of girls don’t participate in sport, versus 25 percent of boys. Game Growers participants will not only have the opportunity to implement their ideas to get more girls playing, but they’ll also have the chance to grow their own leadership potential by developing ideas that make a difference in their community and making their voices heard.
“Nike believes that girls who move, move the world. And we know that 13 is a critical age to keep girls engaged in sport so they can reap the benefits of being active,” said Caitlin Morris, General Manager of Social & Community Impact at NIKE, Inc. “This is the age when girls are likely to drop out of sport – a lack of supportive coaches or access to the right product to play with confidence are two of many reasons why. Inclusive, community-based programs like Game Growers connect girls to play and sport and provide them with the opportunity to shape the future of the game for other girls, too.”
New this year, Game Growers will include a group of Game Growers Teammates – a second opportunity for interested participants who are unable to serve as Co-Captains but would still like to be involved in the program. These girls will have the opportunity to support Co-Captains on the development and implementation of their plan.
Last season, the Nets worked alongside Tessa Powell and Gemma Pauls, both from The British International School of New York, who were members of their school’s basketball team and bonded strongly over a shared interest in sports, arts, and empowering girls. As part of their Game Plan, Powell and Pauls designed a sports-themed social media app called ‘Tip-off’ that connected users with nearby sports facilities to increase their access to gameplay.