With grandchildren Natalie, Maisy and Little Hunter at his side and sporting Sevens jerseys, Joe Biden brought the crowd to their feet during halftime at a recent Delaware 87ers game to benefit the Beau Biden Foundation. This was the Foundation’s second annual event with the 87ers, and on both occasions the now former Vice President spoke to well wishers in the crowd, promoting the importance of child abuse prevention.
As part of the program, staff at the Beau Biden Foundation made child ID kits for interested families. Since the Foundation has partnered with the 87ers, the organization has distributed about 200 child ID kits to families in Delaware.
In the two short years the 87ers have partnered with the Beau Biden Foundation, hundreds of children have been reached with messages about child abuse prevention and anti bullying.
Just this week members of the Delaware 87ers team visited two schools in Wilmington — Austin Baltz Elementary and Bancroft Elementary — to read an anti-bullying story to youngsters. Eighty-seveners Guard Askia Booker and Forward Devin Robinson read “The Juice Box Bully” to multiple classes of Kindergarteners, 1st and 2nd graders — 240 kids in all. The story contains messages about standing up to bullying, encouraging kind behaviors, and tips for approaching adults to report bullying.
“The kids literally and figuratively looked up to those players!” said Public Allies AmeriCorps Member Dominique said Public Allies AmeriCorps Member Dominique Oppenheimer, who helped plan the 87ers / Read Aloud event with the Beau Biden Foundation.
The Foundation maintains that education is critical to the prevention of child abuse. Bringing their message into the schools and engaging with children at a young age are key to delivering their message. Each student received a copy of the book, which was personally handed to them by one of the basketball players.
“The kids loved it,” said Oppenheimer. “Part of it is that the pro basketball players are of course heroes to these kids. But I think the message really sunk in with a lot of the kids as well.”
The Beau Biden Foundation also kicked off a multi-school district training program this month to train 1,000 teachers and on how to eliminate situations where children could be vulnerable to abuse. For more information about the Foundation, please visit their website: https://www.beaubidenfoundation.org.