Montreal, QUEBEC - (February 1, 2019) - Sun Life Financial (Sun Life), the National Basketball Association (NBA), the Toronto Raptors, and Boys & Girls Clubs of Canada (BGCC) are teaming up to launch the Sun Life Dunk For Diabetes program in Quebec - the first program of its kind in the province.
Sun Life Dunk for Diabetes aims to promote the importance of a healthy and active lifestyle as a means of preventing type 2 diabetes. As part of this initiative, children from Boys & Girls Clubs in Montreal, Longueuil and Stoneham-et- Tewksbury will participate in a six-week health and wellness program this winter.
Dawson Boys & Girls Club hosted the official launch of the program today, where Montreal-based participants pledged their commitment to complete the weekly basketball-inspired fitness and nutrition challenges. Each week includes basic exercises, nutritional and diabetes education, and healthy habits, with the chance to win prizes after each challenge is completed.
As part of today's announcement, a newly refurbished basketball court was unveiled by Sun Life and the NBA. Members of the local community and Dawson Boys & Girls Club will benefit from the newly renovated facilities, which include new floors, baskets and more. A group of local Sun Life employees volunteered to help refurbish the facilities.
"For us, at Sun Life, true wealth is about health and adopting a healthy lifestyle. With the Dunk for Diabetes program, which is being launched today in Quebec, we are continuing our efforts to stop the progression of type 2 diabetes in the country. I am so glad children in Montreal, Longueuil and Stoneham-et-Tewksbury can now benefit from this program which will be a valuable legacy in their future," said Jacques Goulet, President, Sun Life Financial Canada.
"Physical activity and healthy lifestyles are key to minimizing long-term health risks for children and youth," said Owen Charters, President and CEO of Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada. "Thanks to the generosity of Sun Life Financial and the NBA, we are excited to expand the very successful Dunk for Diabetes program to Boys and Girls Clubs in Quebec and use the power of sport to bring prevention and awareness of type 2 diabetes to more young people."
"Basketball unites communities, develops core values, and can help instill healthy habits that last a lifetime," said Dan MacKenzie, Vice President and Managing Director, NBA Canada. "We're proud to play a pivotal role in the Sun Life Dunk for Diabetes program, harnessing the passion and excitement Canadians of all ages have for the game while shining a spotlight on the importance of disease prevention and physical activity."
Since its inception in 2017, the Sun Life Dunk for Diabetes program has been rolled out in 29 communities across Canada. This program is part of Sun Life Financial's commitment to proactive and preventive health and wellness programs that help build stronger healthier communities. Type 2 diabetes affects a great number of people around the globe and has very significant complications. Sun Life Financial has committed nearly $25 million globally to support diabetes awareness, prevention, care and research initiatives since 2012.
About the NBA
The NBA is a global sports and media business built around four professional sports leagues: the National Basketball Association, the Women's National Basketball Association, the NBA G League and the NBA 2K League, set to launch in May 2018. The NBA has established a major international presence with games and programming in 215 countries and territories in 50 languages, and merchandise for sale in more than 125,000 stores in 100 countries on six continents. NBA rosters at the start of the 2017-18 season featured 108 international players from a record 42 countries and territories. NBA Digital's assets include NBA TV, NBA.com, the NBA App and NBA League Pass. The NBA has created one of the largest social media communities in the world, with 1.4 billion likes and followers globally across all league, team, and player platforms. Through NBA Cares, the league addresses important social issues by working with internationally recognized youth-serving organizations that support education, youth and family development, and health-related causes.
About the Boys and Girls Club of Canada
Community-based services. Positive relationships. Life-changing programs. As Canada's largest child- and youth- serving organization, Boys and Girls Clubs provide vital programs and services to over 200,000 young people in 700 communities across Canada. During critical out-of-school hours, our Clubs help young people discover who they are, what they can do, and how they can get there. Our trained staff and volunteers give them the tools to realize positive outcomes in self-expression, academics, healthy living, physical activity, mental health, leadership, and more. Since 1900, Boys and Girls Clubs have opened their doors to children, youth, and families in small and large cities, and rural and Indigenous communities. If a young person needs it, our Clubs provide it. Learn more at bgccan.com and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @BGCCAN.
Sun Life Financial in the community
At Sun Life Financial, we are committed to building sustainable, healthier communities for life and we're proud to hold the Caring Company designation from Imagine Canada. Community wellness is an important part of our sustainability commitment and we believe that by actively supporting the communities in which we live and work, we can help build a positive environment for our Clients, Employees, advisors and shareholders. Our philanthropic support focuses on two key areas: health, with an emphasis on diabetes awareness, prevention, care and research initiatives through our Team Up Against DiabetesTM platform; and arts and culture, through our award-winning Making the Arts More AccessibleTM program. In Quebec, our sponsorship and donation initiatives also focus on home economics and financial education.
We also partner with sports properties in key markets to further our commitment to healthy and active living. Our Employees and advisors take great pride in volunteering over 29,000 hours each year and contribute to making life brighter for individuals and families across Canada.