Jayson Tatum is finding a way to make an impact with his day job on hold.
The Boston Celtics forward has partnered with Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal in pledging to donate a total of $500,000 to Boston- and St. Louis-area food banks.
Tatum made the announcement Monday on Instagram, revealing an initiative with Feeding America and Lineage Logistics called "Share a Meal."
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As this virus continues to spread, the future has never felt so unpredictable. And while I sincerely pray that everyone is staying safe, healthy and social distancing, the reality is this virus has negatively impacted our families, loved ones and communities in so many ways. Because of the hardships created through this national health crisis and in an effort to help those in need in the Boston and St. Louis area, I am, through The Jayson Tatum Foundation, partnering with @feedingamerica and @lineagelogistics on their “Share A Meal” campaign. Together, @lineagelogistics and The Jayson Tatum Foundation are pledging to match $250,000 in the Boston area and, with my good friend and fellow basketball player Bradley Beal, $250,000 in the St. Louis area, to help provide meals through @feedingamerica, @stlfoodbank and @gr8bosfoodbank. This campaign will help some of the hardest hit communities in Boston and in Brad and my hometown of St. Louis, receive meals. If you are able to help, I am asking my family, friends, fans and partners to follow the link in my bio to help make a difference in our communities during a very difficult time. I would especially like to thank all the frontline workers and volunteers who are working around the clock to keep all of us safe and healthy. Together…. we will make a difference. #NBATogether #ActsOfCaring
Tatum and Beal, who both grew up in the St. Louis area, each pledged to match $250,000 in donations to the Greater Boston Food Bank and the St. Louis Area Food Bank as the coronavirus pandemic threatens food security in both cities.
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"This campaign will help some of the hardest hit communities in Boston and in Brad and my hometown of St. Louis, receive meals," Tatum wrote, asking those who are able to donate to either food bank.
Boston had 1,877 confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of Sunday, more than several U.S. states. Boston Mayor Marty Walsh issued new measures Sunday encouraging all residents to wear a face covering while leaving their homes and instituting a recommended curfew of 9 p.m.
Tatum and Beal's donations are generous gestures as both cities attempt to deal with a virus that already has disrupted many lives.
Tatum had been enjoying a breakout season for the Celtics before the NBA was suspended on March 11, but it sounds like the 22-year-old has his priorities in order with basketball on pause.
UPDATE (1:30 p.m. ET): Tatum was asked about his pledge Monday during a conference call with reporters. Here's what he had to say:
"Just trying to find a way that I could be of some assistance during this time. Always trying to find a way to give back, especially back in St. Louis and, Brad [Beal] is from St. Louis as well, so he teamed up with me to donate to help the people back home in St. Louis, and then to help the city of Boston. That’s how that came about."