LeBron James and his “I PROMISE” school will now provide transition housing for students and their families who are in need of a healthy living environment.
The LeBron James Family Foundation and Graduate Hotels announced the “I PROMISE Village by Graduate Hotels,” which will aid students whose families are dealing with hurdles like homelessness, domestic violence and additional unsafe leaving arrangements.
“Initially, our work was focused on helping these kids earn an education,” James said in a statement. “But we’ve found that it is impossible to help them learn if they are struggling to survive — if they are hungry, if they have no heat in the freezing winter, if they live in fear for their safety. We want this place to be their home where they feel safe, supported, and loved, knowing we are right there with them every step of the way as they get back on their feet.”
According to ESPN, the new village will be in a historic Akron apartment building, which will be renovated and available for living as soon as July 2020.
“Being able to offer this safe haven for our families is transformational in every sense of the word,” said Michele Campbell, the LeBron James Family Foundation executive director. “This is about more than just getting kids to school. This is about keeping them alive. We’re seeing families struggling every day with very real and often times unexpected issues that turn their worlds upside down. This will allow the family time and opportunities to grow while not worrying if they’ll have a roof over their head.”
The school currently has 250 third and fourth graders who are considered at risk and will have a full expansion from first to eighth grade by 2022.
“The ‘I Promise Village by Graduate Hotels’ will be a monumental next step for us and LeBron and his Foundation’s commitment to the future of the students and their families,” Graduate Hotels founder and CEO Ben Weprin said. “It’s humbling to see the change they are affecting on a daily basis and we’re honored to be a part of the journey.”