New York, April 3 – The NBA, Golden State Warriors and IBM unveiled a newly finished Reading and Learning Center at the San Leandro Boys & Girls Club today. Warriors players including Antawn Jamison, Jason Richardson, Danny Fortson and Adonal Foyle were on-hand to help unveil the Reading and Learning Center and conduct a special reading event with the young boys and girls of the club. The players were joined by NBA Hall of Famer Bob Lanier, the Mayor of San Leandro, Shelia Young, Warriors COO Robert Rowell,Wee Pals creator Morrie Turner, Oakland Chief of Police Richard Word and Warriors mascot Thunder along with the Warrior Girls and Scholastic’s Clifford the Big Red Dog.

Gilbert Arenas checks out the computers with a girl from San Leandro Boys & Girls Club in their new Reading and Learning Center.
NBAE Photos
As part of the NBA’s Read to Achieve Program, the NBA teamed with the Warriors, IBM’s Teaming for Technology program and Reading Is Fundamental, Inc.® (RIF) to complete the Reading and Learning Center which will provide the community with donated books, resource guides and reference materials. In addition, IBM has provided educational software, personal computers and training as part of its Teaming for Technology initiative.

“My teammates and I want to make a difference in the lives of children in this community,” said Warriors forward Antawn Jamison. “One of the most important contributions we can make is to remind them about the joy and importance of reading which will help prepare them for their future.”

The San Leandro Boys & Girls Club’s Reading and Learning Center is the latest created by the NBA’s Read to Achieve program. In an effort to provide access to reading materials and technology to young people and as a part of its national reading campaign, the NBA and its teams plan to create Reading and Learning centers across North America as well as donate more than 250,000 free books to schools and community organizations.

“We couldn’t be more excited about what has happened here today,” said Robrt Tucknott, President of the San Leandro Boys & Girls Club. “Thanks to the commitment that the NBA, The Warriors and IBM have shown to this community the children here will be better prepared with the tools necessary for future success.”

Since its beginning in 1997, IBM’s Teaming for Technology has provided direct benefits to more than 5,000 community-based nonprofit organizations in 17 cities across the US, and technology training to more than 2.5 million young people. In The Bay Area, through partnerships with The United Way of the Bay Area and Ameri*Corp Vista, Teaming for Technology is increasing technology capacity for nonprofit agencies by helping them create technology plans, install computers, and train their staff in the use of technology.

“We are extremely excited to take part in this great event,” said Janet Rocco, IBM Community Relations Manager Northwest. “Through programs like Teaming for Technology and Read to Achieve, the IBM and the NBA families are committed to providing the technology needed for today’s youth to achieve future success.”

Also this week, the Warriors unveiled two other Reading and Learning Centers in the Bay Area including the Boys & Girls Club of the Peninsula in east Palo Alto on Monday and the Ernest Ingold unit of the Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco tomorrow.

The NBA’s Read to Achieve program is a year-round campaign designed to help young people develop a life-long love for reading and encourage adults to read regularly to children. Efforts include the annual donation of more than 250,000 books through a variety of reading events and book fairs, as well as the development of essay contests and on-line programs. Read to Achieve is supported by the entire NBA Family including the NBA, WNBA and the National Basketball Development League (NBDL), the NBA's officials, parents and wives of players and the NBA Players Association and Retired Players Association.