Champion in Action

The BASE Named Champion in Action for Social Equity & Inclusion

Citizens and NECN provide $35,000 in funding, communications and volunteer support

The BASE, a nonprofit shining a spotlight on the limitless potential of urban youth while empowering student-athletes to achieve their full potential both on and off the field, has been named a 2021 Champion in Action in the category of Social Equity & Inclusion. The award, announced jointly by Citizens and NECN, includes $35,000 in unrestricted funding, as well as promotional and volunteer support for the organization’s outstanding work.

The BASE’s Academic and Career Institute provides a range of support that prepares youth for success throughout high school and college, with the goal of preparing them for meaningful careers. Services include academic check-ins; college and career visits; college application and financial aid support; skills-based workshops (e.g. resume building, financial literacy); and connections to internships. In partnership with the Urban College of Boston, The BASE offers on-site college courses for students to earn a full year of college credits for free. The BASE is also launching a partnership to bring science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics (STEAM) education into the heart of Roxbury, as well as working with Babson College to run an on-site class in entrepreneurship at The BASE. Champions in Action is part of Citizens Helping Citizens, the bank’s initiative designed to help local communities prosper. It provides support for nonprofit organizations to recognize their contributions to communities throughout Massachusetts.

“We all have a responsibility to support a pathway for social and economic prosperity, and we are proud to recognize a nonprofit organization that is empowering future leaders with confidence and skills to grow,” said Jerry Sargent, president, Citizens Massachusetts. “The BASE is ensuring that STEAM education is accessible and affordable to our youth right in their community – a critical effort that is needed now more than ever to help address the opportunity gap.”

“Investing in our youth, is investing in our future,” said Chris Wayland, president and general manager of the NBCUniversal Boston Owned Properties and Regional Sports Networks. “We applaud not only The Base program, but also their unique combination of coaching and education methods that have undoubtedly created champions in our community.”

To date, the Champions in Action program has awarded more than $10 million in contributions and promotional support to 357 nonprofits across the bank’s footprint. In Massachusetts, 57 nonprofits have been honored as Champions in Action, receiving more than $1.5 million.

“At The BASE, we know that talent is equally distributed, but opportunity is not,” said Robert Lewis Jr., founder and president of The BASE. “Our goal is to uniquely provide access and opportunity for youth in our community. We envision a world in which urban youth are recognized as our nation's greatest untapped asset and the most sought-after talent pipeline.”

As a Champion in Action, The BASE will receive:

  • A $35,000 contribution in unrestricted funds from Citizens;
  • Features and public service announcements from NECN;
  • Volunteer support from Citizens;
  • Complimentary membership to the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network;
  • Public relations and promotional support.
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