Award is part of $3 million in new grants to athletic fields nationwide

DETROIT – The Flint Sports Complex will get a new synthetic turf field, thanks in part to a $250,000 grant by the Detroit Lions through the National Football League (NFL) Foundation Grassroots Program.
The grant from the Lions, the NFL Foundation, and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) to the Sylvester Broome Empowerment Village is part of $3 million in field refurbishment awards allocated this year.
The NFL Foundation Grassroots Program – a partnership between the NFL Foundation and LISC, the nation’s leading community development support organization – has supported the construction or renovation of 376 football fields nationwide since 1998. During that time, the NFL Foundation has granted nearly $61 million to revitalize playing fields in underserved neighborhoods. Fields are newly built or significantly renovated, with improvements such as irrigation systems, lights, bleachers, scoreboards, goal posts and turf. Grassroots grants are issued once established funding thresholds are reached for each project.
“We are honored to be able to work with LISC Flint and the NFL Foundation to bring this significant Grassroots Program grant to Sylvester Broome Empowerment Village and in turn the children of Flint,” said Senior Director of Community Relations and Detroit Lions Charities Jen McCollum. “It’s of the utmost importance to us at the Detroit Lions to aid in access to safe, healthy play throughout Michigan. This investment will pay dividends in the community now and in the future.”
To date the Lions have worked with LISC to provide $1.72 million in NFL Foundation Grassroots Program grants to several Michigan communities.  
LISC identifies local, nonprofit, community-based agencies that have an interest in building or refurbishing football fields in schools and neighborhood parks. Through the program, local agencies are provided with the necessary financing and technical assistance to improve the quality and safety of fields in their communities. The agencies oversee the construction, maintenance and programming of the fields.
“We are thrilled that Sylvester Broome Empowerment Village was selected for this grant,” commented Charlotte Smith, Deputy Director of the LISC Flint office. “Maryum and her team worked hard to put together an impressive application and their efforts paid off. The new Flint Sports Complex at Sylvester Broome will benefit more than 25,000 youth athletes and thousands of Flint residents who will use the new facility for community events. The LISC Flint staff are excited to have played a role in this new domed, year-round facility becoming an integral part of the north Flint community.” 
The Detroit Lions will have a check presentation media opportunity surrounding the NFL Foundation Grassroots Program.
WHO: Detroit Lions Legend Lomas Brown
Mayor of the City of Flint Sheldon Neeley
Sylvester Broome Empowerment Village Executive Director Maryum Rasool
WHAT:          A check presentation from the Detroit Lions, NFL Foundation and LISC Flint to the Sylvester Broome Empowerment Village for new synthetic turf field at The Flint Sports Complex.
WHERE: Sylvester Broome Empowerment Village
4119 Saginaw St.
Flint, MI 48505 
WHEN:Monday, January 27, 202010 A.M.Media availability to follow
About the NFL FoundationThe National Football League Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of those touched by the game of football – from players at all levels to communities across the country. The NFL Foundation represents the 32 NFL clubs and supports the health and safety of athletes, youth football, and the communities that support our game. For more information on The NFL Foundation, visit:
About LISCLISC equips struggling communities with the capital, program strategy and know-how to become places where people can thrive. It combines corporate, government and philanthropic resources. Since 1980, LISC has invested $20 billion to build or rehab 400,500 affordable homes and apartments and develop 67 million square feet of retail, community and educational space—including athletic facilities and other recreational space. For more, visit
About the Detroit LionsThe Detroit Lions are a professional American football team based in Detroit, Michigan. They are members of the North Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL), and play their home games at Ford Field in downtown Detroit. The team located to Detroit in 1934 and is the National Football League’s fifth-oldest franchise. The Detroit Lions most recently made the NFL playoffs in 2016, when they finished with a 9-7 record. In addition to professional football, the Detroit Lions have a visible and active community relations role in the Detroit area. With a focus on health and wellness, and community revitalization, the Lions have contributed $7.2 million through philanthropic efforts since 1991. For more information, please visit

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