NBA champion, philanthropist and Flint resident Kyle Kuzma announced Wednesday that he will donate $1 million through his Kyle Kuzma Foundation to the Flint YMCA to help them build a new gym, The gymnasium will serve as the center of activity there. The Washington Wizards star’s contribution to his hometown YMCA continues a long tradition of generosity. Kuzma has often recounted playing basketball at the downtown Flint YMCA as a kid.
“Growing up in Flint, the YMCA was like my home away from home,” Kyle Kuzma said. “That was my safe place, and in retrospect it really was the home of many of my childhood dreams. This donation is for the next generation, and I hope this new facility will give them what I have: a place to dream. “
The Flint YMCA and surrounding area had problems and needed to be exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic. YMCA facilities cannot meet many of the needs of today’s cities.
The facility will break ground in the spring of 2023, and Kuzma’s donation will help build the gym there. The new gymnasium will be a multi-sport venue with the tools needed for basketball, volleyball and pickleball, in addition to hosting weekend and summer youth sports camps. A spacious stepped area provides seating for spectators and smaller games. In recognition of the contributions made by Kyle Kuzma and his foundation, the new area will be called “Kyle Kuzma Coliseum.”
“This gift was so special and so personal,” said Shirley Hilton, YMCA of Greater Flint CEO. “Kyle has done what we want all the kids in our youth programs to do – to grow, thrive and live out their dreams. He is a role model for all of our kids. Kyle is building a gym that empowers the next generation of young People can have basketball dreams.”