Wade’s World Foundation and the 15 Best Athlete-Founded Charities

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The 15 Best Athlete-Found Charities

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Basketball superstar Dwyane Wade is known for his achievements on the court, which includes three NBA championships. However, his Wade’s World Foundation is proof that his success reaches far beyond basketball.

Wade has used his fame to form a foundation that “is dedicated to providing support to various educational, health and family service programs, in particular those that benefit underserved communities,” according to the Foundation’s website.

Like many athletes, Wade realizes that the opportunity he has been given can’t be wasted. There is a reason why he’s in the position that he’s in, which is clearly to use his good fortune to help others in need.

“I can’t just let basketball define who I am and what I am supposed to become… Like my mother always tells me, '[My life] is bigger than basketball,'” Wade says on the website.

Several programs that involve the education of youth, fatherhood and health have been created to improve the lives of anyone that will allow it. Wade’s Foundation teamed up with By The Hand Club For Kids, which is “an organization dedicated to helping inner city kids discover abundant life.” Wade has also worked with his father closely to help other fathers establish relationships with their children. For his efforts, Wade was appointed Ambassador-At-Large for Fatherhood by President Barack Obama.

What makes Wade’s World Foundation so spectacular is that it is involved in so many different programs that are aimed at helping so many different people. Make sure to check out the slideshow to see the 15 best athlete-founded charities.

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15. Kerry Collins Foundation

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Retired quarterback Kerry Collins has focused his charitable work towards organizations that thrive off the community. More specifically, he has donated more than $2 million to organizations such as Big Brothers & Big Sisters. Even more respectable, Collins saw to it that his foundations helped the post-Katrina effort in a big way. He also personally donated $500,000 to renovate a children’s rehabilitation center at the NYU Medical Center.

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14. Donald Driver Foundation

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Because Donald Driver knows what it’s like to grow up on the streets and making difficult decisions to earn cash, he has spent his life trying to give back in any way possible. The Donald Driver Foundation is geared towards the aid of homeless families in which he helps them improve their quality of life. It’s one thing if Driver would just simply give these families money and be on his way. However, he believes it’s important to be there every step of the way and personally help families get back on their feet.

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13. Dikembe Mutombo Foundation

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Dikembe Mutombo is one of the greatest athlete humanitarians alive today. The Dikembe Mutombo Foundation was formed to help the people of his native country of Democratic Republic of Congo. In 1997, Mutombo personally donated $3.5 million towards opening a $29 million hospital near his hometown. The hospital finally opened in 2006, thanks to Mutombo donating another $15 million to ensure that the project would be complete. Even though he has done so much for so many different programs, the hospital is by far his greatest accomplishment.

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12. Alex Smith Foundation

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Quarterback Alex Smith’s Foundation was formed to give foster teens the right guidance to grow into productive adults. Whether it is mentor, internships, housing or job programs, Smith makes sure the teens have every opportunity to succeed in life. The most remarkable part of the Alex Smith Foundation is that an incredible 91 percent of donations have gone towards the programs.

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11. Michael Phelps Foundation

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Michael Phelps used his $1 million bonus from the Beijing Olympics, thanks to Speedo, to start up the Michael Phelps Foundation. The concentration of the Foundation is to teach kids how to swim. More specifically, it offers training in swimming in numerous communities across the country. The goal is to not only teach children how to swim, but also to ensure that those children stay active.

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10. Fourward Foundation

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Brett Favre’s Fourward Foundation was created to give disadvantaged and disabled children who live in Wisconsin and Mississippi an opportunity to have joy in their lives. The foundation donates money and works closely with other organizations within the two states. Favre and his wife Deanna have donated more than $3 million to help fund the Special Olympics and Make a Wish Foundation, among others. The former quarterback has also been known to host annual golf and softball tournaments to raise money for charity.

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9. PeyBack Foundation

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Peyton Manning’s PeyBack Foundation has donated more than $6.5 million to support children in Indiana, Tennessee, Louisiana and Colorado. Whether it’s helping other organizations through grants or starting up its own programs, the PeyBack Foundation has done wonders to ensure children have every opportunity to have success throughout their life.

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8. Turn 2 Foundation

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Shortstop Derek Jeter is one of the most famous athletes in the world, which is why it’s good that he has decided to use his name to help others. Jeter’s Turn 2 Foundation provides the necessarily tools to help motivate children to get outside and play sports, instead of getting caught up in alcohol or drugs. Jeter’s foundation has accomplished this by donating more than $8 million to help fund afterschool programs.

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7. Tiger Woods Foundation

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Say what you want about golfer Tiger Woods, but the man has used his good fortune and fame to help children live a great life. Over a two-year span in the late 2000s, Woods personally donated $10.85 million to his father’s scholarship fund and the Tiger Woods Learning Center so that underprivileged children could attend college. He also has been known to donate his winnings from charity golf tournaments.

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6. Wade’s World Foundation

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The Wade’s World Foundation is all about giving back to the community in any way possible. Whether it is Wade running basketball camps for the youth, donating clothing to children in need or building parks for kids to play, his No. 1 goal off the court is to give back anyway he can.

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5. Carmelo Anthony Foundation

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Carmelo Anthony is by far the most charitable basketball who currently plays in the NBA. In fact, he has donated more than $4 million to help communities in Maryland and New York through different outreach programs. The goal is to improve the communities while also give disadvantaged children the resources to make the most out of their lives.

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4. Homes for the Holidays

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One of the more remarkable and creative charities in existence is that of Warrick Dunn’s Homes for the Holidays. Since 1998, the former running back has helped over 100 single-parent families find a home. Basically, Dunn and his foundation put a down payment on a house and furnish it so that single parents can have a place to raise their children.

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3. Victory Junction Gang Camp

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Kyle Petty’s Victory Junction Gang Camp has done an amazing job to give terminally ill children a fun environment where they can play and have the time of their life. Even more incredible, the foundation has raised more than $10.5 million for children’s charities over the past two decades.

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2. Forever Young Foundation for Children

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Steve Young’s Forever Young Foundation for Children raised more than $6 million from 2008-2010 to help children who need academic or athletic help and are unable to get it elsewhere. It’s aimed towards children who have “physical, emotional and financial challenges,” with the purpose of giving those children an advantage in their lives. What makes Young’s foundation even more incredible is that 75 percent of donations go towards the cause.

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1. Andre Agassi Foundation

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One of the best athlete founded charities is that of the one that was started by former tennis star Andre Agassi. The Andre Agassi Foundation was founded nearly two decades ago. Over that span, it helped build the $40 million Agassi Prep, which is a tuition-free public charter school in Las Vegas. The foundation also built a Boys & Girls club as well as spent millions of dollars to help children in need all over the world.