Eat. Learn. Play., the organization founded by three-time NBA champion and two-time MVP Stephen Curry and entrepreneur, host and two-time The New York Times best-selling author Ayesha Curry, is excited to announce the conclusion of a successful ninth annual Christmas with the Currys, where the foundation invested more than $5 million back into the Oakland community this holiday season.
From December 13 to 24, as Oakland continues to recover and rebuild from the ongoing pandemic, the Currys and their partners spread holiday cheer and celebrated individuals, families and organizations throughout the community.
This year’s one-of-a-kind 12 Days of Christmas with the Currys saw heart-warming and emotional surprise and delight moments throughout the community, which consisted of pop-up events, giftings, funding programs and more. “I am so very humbled by and grateful for every single person and organization who lent a hand in making this year’s Christmas with the Currys a tremendous success,” said Ayesha Curry, Co-Founder of Eat. Learn. Play. “When we started to think about and plan for this year’s holiday celebration, we had no idea just how big the annual tradition would become! With 12 consecutive days of surprise and delight moments, the impact of this year’s Christmas with the Currys has gone beyond our wildest dreams and expectations. This holiday season, we were able to show up for our amazing community and demonstrate what could happen when everyone is able to come together and make an impact.”
For 12 straight days, Eat. Learn. Play. was proud to celebrate the season of giving with joy and hope for children and families in Oakland. Once again, this year’s festivities reflected Oakland’s vibrant diversity, inclusion and cultural pride. The foundation’s daily surprises for children, families and organizations ranged from fulfilling classroom wish lists of Oakland teachers, to celebrating the dedication and impact of local community heroes. With the help of Santa and Mrs. Claus, who joined in on the fun again this year, the holiday spirit of the Currys’ full stop approach was unmatched. The annual tradition was truly a full-fledged campaign that incorporated and celebrated the individuals, leaders and community organizations throughout Northern California.
“Thank you to all of our incredible donors, supporters, brand and community partners for their unwavering support year after year as we bring a little holiday cheer to the Oakland community,” said Stephen Curry, Co-Founder of Eat. Learn. Play. “Seeing the smiles on everyone’s faces has created memories of a lifetime for me. We’re so blessed to be able to give back to the community that has given and supported us so much.”
Day 1: The first day of the 12 Days of Christmas with the Currys was an intimate yet impactful surprise with some of Oakland’s most underappreciated heroes — teachers. In partnership with DonorsChoose, Eat. Learn. Play. invited four deserving Oakland teachers where Stephen Curry surprised them with the news that Eat. Learn. Play. will fund the teachers’ classroom literacy projects, as well as every teacher-led literacy project in the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) up to $1 million.
Day 2: One of Eat. Learn. Play.‘s goals is to help rebuild middle school sports programs in Oakland that have been affected by budget cuts. The Eat. Learn. Play. Bus was on hand as hundreds of fans and volunteers cheered on middle school runners from across Oakland as they competed in the city cross country championships. At the event, Eat. Learn. Play. surprised the Oakland Athletic League (OAL) with a $150,000 donation that will allow them to expand access to quality sports programming for Oakland middle schoolers. Athletes also received gifts from the support of partners UnderArmour, Curry Brand and Dick’s Sporting Goods.
Day 3: This year, Eat. Learn. Play. was proud to celebrate Ms. Regina Jackson and the East Oakland Youth Development Center (EOYDC) as Ms. Regina is about to embark upon a well deserved retirement. As a symbol of gratitude for her incredible service, Eat. Learn. Play. surprised Ms. Regina with an unexpected grant of $150,000 in her honor to fund EOYDC’s literacy programs to ensure their youth continue to have the support they need to become proficient readers and writers. Ms. Regina was also invited to an upcoming Golden State Warriors Game VIP style, in partnership with Rakuten.
Day 4: As La Clinica De la Raza has worked tirelessly during the ongoing pandemic to keep the Oakland community safe and healthy, Eat. Learn. Play. was proud to announce that the foundation will fully fund their literacy efforts. This generous gift will provide five new, culturally-appropriate books to each of the thousands of kids who come in annually for their checkups at the clinic. Additionally, along with Eat. Learn. Play.’s partner, JPMorgan Chase, the foundation is excited to host the La Clinica De la Raza team in a suite at a Golden State Warriors game.
Day 5: Part of the foundation’s ‘PLAY’ pillar is the goal of expanding access to the game of golf, which is why local organization Ace Kids Golf was given the surprise of a lifetime.The Olympic Club in San Francisco opened their renowned courses to the kids of Ace Kids Golf for an experience they won’t forget. Together, with The Olympic Club Foundation, Eat. Learn. Play. surprised Ace Kids Golf with a $250,000 donation that provides the funds they need to expand access to the game of golf to 2,000 youth players in the community.
Day 6: Eat. Learn. Play. surprised Oakland’s vibrant Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) community with a visit by the Eat. Learn. Play. Bus in Oakland’s Lincoln Square to celebrate the holidays. The event surprised hundreds of kids and families where they were able to enjoy activities and games, free books and amazing food prepared by local restaurants. Every family left with gift boxes full of gift cards, toys and other fun and essential resources.
Day 7: Recently, local organization Homies Empowerment created a plan for a free breakfast program that will serve nutritious breakfasts daily to Oakland students struggling with food insecurity. Eat. Learn. Play. was thrilled to surprise Homies Empowerment with a generous donation from partner Lineage Logistics that will cover 100% of the costs to run and operate their new free breakfast program for 1,500 students.
Day 8: Along with Literati, Eat. Learn. Play. gifted 100,000 new books to kids and families throughout the Oakland community. Most of the books gifted will go directly to families, with the rest used to replenish the libraries at more than 20 parks and recreation centers across Oakland.
Day 9: Eat. Learn. Play. worked with The Unity Council, Ripple and KABOOM! to bring holiday cheer to residents of the 36th Avenue Apartments in East Oakland, where they surprised residents with an all new renovated playspace equipped with a new state-of-the-art playground, community garden and basketball court.
Day 10: The Black Cultural Zone has been a crucial advocate for families in the Bay Area, ensuring Black arts remain present and thriving in and around Oakland. Eat. Learn. Play., alongside FTX, Rakuten and Community Kitchens, was excited to surprise the organization with a fun-filled day of joy, presents and roller skating.
Day 11: Throughout the pandemic, Eat. Learn. Play. partnered with community partners to employ 130+ local restaurants to feed the community at a time when 37% of households in Oakland are food insecure. For Day 11, co-founder Ayesha Curry surprised Oakland chefs Christina “Chef Lala” Harrison and Michele McQueen to discuss the continued community challenges with food insecurity and shine a spotlight on the Black restaurant owners of Oakland. In partnership with Goldman Sachs, and their One Million Black Women initiative, the chefs were then surprised when Ayesha announced a grant to provide 25,000 high-quality meals from 10 Oakland-based Black women-owned restaurants to a community struggling with food insecurity. The 2,500 meals from each restaurant will be distributed through the foundation’s new Eat. Learn. Play. Bus.
Day 12: Closing out the 12 Days of Christmas with the Currys, Eat. Learn. Play. was proud to highlight the long-time partner, the Alameda County Community Food Bank (ACCFB) for being one of the foundation’s core community partners. Eat. Learn. Play. hosted a holiday party for the staff and volunteers, where Co-Founder Stephen Curry showed up on the Eat. Learn. Play. Bus and surprised everyone with a bag of gifts. Additionally, alongside the generous help of Workday, Stephen announced a $2.5M grant towards ACCFB so they can continue their tireless efforts to keep the community fed.
Eat. Learn. Play. is grateful for the continued support of its lead partners including FTX, Kaiser Permanente and Workday, without them, this holiday celebration would not be possible. Also providing support this year are partners BriteBrush, Callaway, Chipman Relocation & Logistics, CLIF Bar, Clover, Curry Brand, DICK’s Sporting Goods, DonorsChoose, Flexpower, Ghirardelli, GoGo SqueeZ, Golden State Warriors, Goldman Sachs, GoodGood Eats, HAPE Toys, JP Morgan Chase, JustFab, Kaboom!, Lineage Logistics, Literati, Lyft, Mezzetta, Oakland A’s, Partake, Pixar Animation Studios, Rakuten, Ripple, Soul Focus Sports, The Olympic Club, Under Armour and Whole Foods.