Driving Equality Through Sport

As a kid growing up in Detroit, Anthony Johnson was always looking for positive role models, and he found them in sports. Now, as Head Coach at the Nike Detroit Community Store, he’s in a position to offer the same thing to kids just like him.

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Moving in Motor City

Nike is fully committed to using the power of sport to promote diversity, inclusion, and equality. Our partner—PeacePlayers International, an organization that develops youth leaders, builds relationships, changes perceptions, and strengthens communities using sport as a tool to bridge divides—are too. PeacePlayers promotes positive experiences in sport and play for kids in Detroit, and when Johnson joined Nike, he was eager to get involved.

We’re touching different communities throughout Detroit. It’s the city where I was born. It’s the city where I was raised, and just being able to impact people coming from where I’m from is huge.
Anthony Johnson, assistant head coach at the Nike Detroit Community Store
Hoop Dreams

Johnson’s love of basketball is right up there with his love of his hometown, so when he became a Nike Community Ambassador, it made perfect sense that he, along with his Nike Detroit Community Store teammates, would choose to volunteer on the courts. He became a basketball coach with PeacePlayers, which aims to show kids from different backgrounds that “if we can play together, we can live together.”

Everybody is welcome, everybody is equal. No matter what your differences are, you’re accepted. I love that.
Anthony Johnson, assistant head coach at the Nike Detroit Community Store
Spreading the Love

Detroit is not the only city in the U.S. benefiting from this partnership: Nike’s support for PeacePlayers has enabled the organization to bring its equality-boosting and community-building sports programs to neighborhoods in Baltimore, Brooklyn and Los Angeles as well.

Remember, we’re all Made to Play. Be that someone in a kid’s life and give them the opportunity to unleash their potential and realize their dreams.
Jorge Casimiro, Chief Social & Community Impact Officer, NIKE, Inc.