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Former North Carolina basketball player Michael Jordan applauds during a half-time presentation in an NCAA college basketball game between North Carolina and Duke in Chapel Hill, N.C., March 4, 2017.
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NewsDefend the Planet

Michael Jordan Just Donated $2 Million to Hurricane Florence Relief

Why Global Citizens Should Care
With powerful storms like Hurricane Florence on the rise due to climate change, we need public figures like Jordan to motivate others to help recovery relief more than ever. You can join us in taking action here.

Michael Jordan wasn’t going to sit back and watch Hurricane Florence take a toll on his hometown.

Raised in Wilmington, North Carolina, one of the many areas rocked by the hurricane, Jordan donated $2 million to storm relief and recovery efforts, he announced Tuesday, the Washington Post reports

Take Action: Ensure All Communities Can Withstand Climate Disaster

Wilmington is one of the towns surrounded by water in the aftermath of the storm, where residents are cut off from basic necessities like food.

“I know all of those places: Wilmington, Fayetteville, Myrtle Beach, New Bern, and Wallace, which is where my father is from. So quite naturally it hits home, and I felt like I had to act in a sense that this is my home,” the former NBA star told the Associated Press.

Read More: Hurricane Florence and the Rise of Storms Fueled by Climate Change

Jordan’s donation will go toward the American Red Cross and the Foundation for the Carolinas’ Hurricane Florence Response Fund — they’ll receive $1 million each. The Red Cross is providing food and shelter for people who have been displaced by the storm, and the Foundation for the Carolinas is distributing aid to nonprofits in North and South Carolina that need extra support. At the time of writing, his contribution is one of the biggest individual donations to the recovery effort yet. 

Read More: 5 Ways You Can Help the Victims of Hurricane Florence

The Carolinas need all the resources they can get after the Category 5 hurricane hit on Friday with torrential rain and flooding. Not everyone could afford to evacuate, and it left hundreds of thousands of residents stranded without power. Hurricane Florence has already been responsible for 37 deaths. 

Jordan still has friends and family who live in the affected areas and plans to check on them as soon as roads reopen. As recent storms in the US like Hurricane Maria have shown, storms of this scale can devastate towns indefinitely. His donation will help provide immediate and long-term assistance to affected communities. 

“You gotta take care of home,” said Jordan, who reportedly donated $7 million to fund two health centers serving low-income communities in South Carolina in the past and has organized celebrity sporting event fundraisers. 

Jordan is only one member of the sports community who’s stepped up to help the recovery effort. He’s also collaborating with the Charlotte Hornets organization, which has already committed to volunteer its time at a local food bank in Charlotte to assemble supplies for those in need. The NFL Foundation announced on Sunday that it will give $1 million to relief efforts. The Carolina Panthers launched a T-shirt campaign to benefit storm recovery and the Carolina Hurricanes started a relief drive.

“The recovery effort will be massive, and it will take a long time to repair the damage and for families to get back on their feet,” Jordan, who hopes his generosity will influence others to take action, reminded the public in a statement released Friday.