While he's leading the NFL in touchdown passes and directing the highest-scoring offense in the league, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson is staying busy with philanthropic efforts away from the field.
This week Wilson and his wife Ciara announced they are contributing $1.75 million to a charter school in the Seattle area. Through their Why Not You Foundation, Wilson and Ciara are contributing about $1.75 million to rebrand an existing charter program known as Cascade Midway Academy, just south of Seattle. The Cascade high school program was set to debut this year before the pandemic forced founders Garth Reeves and Scott Canfield to delay opening.
Canfield said the superstar couple's generosity will be honored with the school's name change to Why Not You Academy but that Wilson and Ciara won't be involved in the school's day-to-day operations.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Wilson and Ciara said they jumped at the opportunity to help launch the school. It focuses on academics, personalized student plans and internships and mentorships for underserved Black and brown students. The couple said they hope this will be the first of many Why Not You Academy sites across the country.
Additionally, Wilson and Ciara partnered with Amazon Home to pay for new furnishings and a small remodel in the home of a pediatric nurse at Seattle Children's Hospital. Wilson has been a regular visitor to patients at the hospital since he arrived in Seattle.
Amazon Home partnered with a local designer and the Wilsons upgrade Marc Sellier's home to outfit it with brand new furniture, repaired drywall from a flood's damage that forced the family to live elsewhere for more than six months.
"Seeing all of the essential workers on the front lines of this pandemic has made every moment we spend together as a family even more precious," Ciara says. "I'm counting my blessings every day.
"Back in April, nurses and doctors were posting videos of them doing the level up dance, and I'm excited to help support our Hometown Hero with a total refresh of their home so they, too, have a family sanctuary."