The Dreambuilders Foundation is a non-profit organization that works with pro athletes across the country to help financially, physically and mentally-challenged kids receive the items, opportunities and equipment they need to achieve their dreams.
Founded by former NFL linebacker Akin Ayodele, Dreambuilders partners with athletes to “captain” one or more of its programs benefiting kids in the athlete’s city of choice. The foundation partners with grassroots children’s charities in each city to give them access to funding and support they would not otherwise receive.
Dreambuilders supports a variety of programs benefiting children in cities across the country. In each case, our “captains” work closely with other non-profits to activate new services or expand existing services for kids in need.
Each athlete’s programs are unique and built around the causes and initiatives that he or she is passionate about. These programs are operated in coordination with local non-profit charities in each location, giving these great organizations access to funding, resources and awareness they would otherwise not receive.
Dreambuilders is active in cities from coast to coast, and currently partners with schools, after-school centers, children’s hospitals, inner-city sports leagues, sports camps, scholarship programs, organizations helping children of men and women serving the armed forces and charities assisting families with medical expenses.
How It Works
Most professional athletes know they are in a unique position to give back to their community. Their status as public figures puts them in a position to rally public support and corporate funding for causes they are passionate about.
Dreambuilders works with each one of its athletes to develop an impactful program that is near to his or her heart. The foundation then identifies partner organizations in the athlete’s community which will help to operate the program. This allows Dreambuilders to keep overhead costs low and
maximize the number of children who will benefit. In most cases, these partner organizations are grassroots non-profits whose partnership with the athlete allows them to tap into exposure and funding opportunities they otherwise would never have access to.
In each city where it operates a program, Dreambuilders utilizes a multi-tiered approach to raising funds and awareness. This includes corporate sponsorships from businesses looking to gain more exposure from their philanthropic spending or companies that already have an endorsement from the athlete and want to align with his or her community efforts as well. It also includes a commitment from the athlete himself, as well as fundraising events and campaigns that give fans the opportunity to support the program and rub elbows with their favorite players.
In just its third full year of operation, Dreambuilders paid out more than $400,000 to programs in 15 different cities across the U.S. These programs impacted more than 100,000 kids served by 27 different partner organizations or schools. Dreambuilders has more than doubled its charitable payout in the last two years, and is continuing its rapid growth.
What Makes Us Different
The Dreambuilders Foundation provides a win-win-win scenario by partnering one of its “captain” athletes with a dedicated sponsor to activate community programs and projects benefiting disadvantaged children that would simply not exist without their efforts.
Through Dreambuilders, athletes develop their own unique community program(s), sponsors get noticed for their charitable giving, and kids get access to services and opportunities they need to succeed.
If you have a small non profit organization or program that supports children and may be interested in having a local pro athlete align with your cause, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Who is Involved
- Arizona – Tony Jefferson (Cardinals)
- Atlanta – Desmond Truant (Falcons)
- Chicago – Kyle Long (Bears)
- Dallas/Fort Worth – Sean Lee (Cowboys) and Akin Ayodele (NFL-ret.)
- Denver – Demarcus Ware (Broncos)
- Detroit – Marvin Jones, Jr. (Lions)
- Green Bay – Randall Cobb (Packers) and Sam Barrington (Packers)
- Houston – DeAndre Hopkins (Texans) and Chris Myers (NFL-ret.)
- Kansas City – Travis Kelce (Chiefs)
- Miami – Kenny Stills and Michael Thomas (Dolphins)
- New York – Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (Giants)
- Pittsburgh – Josh Harrison (Pirates)
- St. Louis – Michael Wacha (Cardinals)