Brooks & Dunn win Humanitarian Award, select Community Renewal to partner on new playground
Country duo to receive Academy of Country Music/The Home Depot Humanitarian Award on CBS Tuesday, May 15
For release: May 14, 2007
Country music superstars Brooks & Dunn have chosen Shreveport-Bossier Community Renewal as a partner in the construction of a new community playground that is part of the Academy of Country Music/The Home Depot Humanitarian Award they will receive Tuesday evening, May 15, on CBS.
Brooks & Dunn will receive a beautiful crystal trophy designed by Tiffany & Co. during the live telecast of the Academy of Country Music Awards. They will also be honored with a playground donated by The Home Depot and the company's national nonprofit partner KaBOOM!, which envisions a great place to play within walking distance of every child in America.
Shreveport native Kix Brooks asked SBCR to serve as the nonprofit recipient of the playground soon after the award was announced. Community Renewal plans to build the playground next to the Queensborough neighborhood Friendship House, at the corner of W. College Street and Missouri Avenue. The playground will be built by volunteers from Community Renewal, The Home Depot and community members in the fall.
A Friendship House is a haven of hope in low-income neighborhoods, a place for after-school programs, service projects and many other activities that benefit youth in that area. More than 1,700 at-risk children and teens have been helped by one of the eight Community Renewal Friendship Houses since the first one opened in 1997.
The Humanitarian Award recognizes artists who serve others, have a generous spirit and help build the dreams of those in need. Kix Brooks and singing partner Ronnie Dunn were selected by a special committee comprised of executives in the country music industry as well as local and national philanthropic leaders for their ongoing community service and charitable giving.
"In our career, Ronnie and I have done things we could have only dreamed of, but the most rewarding has been when we've made a difference for someone else," Brooks said.
The community-building aspect of the playground makes SBCR a natural partner.
"A key part of the KaBOOM! strategy is to build social capital by engaging the community in the planning and building process. That fits in perfectly with the Community Renewal mission to restore caring communities through caring relationships," said David Westerfield, director of communications at SBCR.
"We are deeply grateful to Kix Brooks for asking us to serve as a partner. This playground will bring together many volunteers in a project that will further enrich the lives of our most vulnerable citizens."
Friendship House relationships and activities help children tempted by drugs and gangs to stay in school, care about their neighbors and develop into responsible adults. The KaBOOM! playground will be an ideal complement, as research has shown that increasing play can help prevent important social problems such as childhood obesity, underachievement in school, youth violence and crime.
Officials said Brooks & Dunn were an easy choice for this year's award.
"Philanthropy and giving back are embedded in The Home Depot culture and are at the core of the Humanitarian Award," said Roger Adams, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of The Home Depot. "Through their charitable giving and community service, Kix and Ronnie truly exemplify the values represented by both The Home Depot and the Academy of Country Music. We are proud to recognize them for their contributions and impact on improving our local communities."
Brooks & Dunn have worked with many charities, some of which have included Hurricane Katrina relief, Vanderbilt Children's Hospital, Habitat for Humanity, Ronald McDonald House and Laughter for the Children that benefits a Nashville children's home. They also hold the distinction of being the top-selling country duo in history, selling 30 million albums that have yielded an incredible 23 No. 1 singles and 40 Top 10 songs. Their tours continually rank as some of the top grossing in any musical genre.
KaBOOM! was founded in 1996 by Darell Hammond and Dawn Hutchison in Washington, D.C. Over the past decade, KaBOOM! has used its innovative community-build model to bring together business and community interests to construct nearly 1,000 new playgrounds, skate parks, sports fields and ice rinks across North America.
The Home Depot® is the world's largest home improvement specialty retailer, with more than 2,163 retail stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Canada, Mexico and China. In fiscal 2006, The Home Depot had sales of $90.8 billion and earnings of $5.8 billion. The Company employs approximately 355,000 associates and has been recognized by FORTUNE magazine as the No. 1 Most Admired Specialty Retailer and the No. 13 Most Admired Corporation in America for 2006.
Shreveport-Bossier Community Renewal is a nonprofit effort to restore safe and healthy communities through caring relationships. Founded in 1994, SBCR reaches at-risk youth through Friendship Houses built in impoverished neighborhoods, strengthens education through the Adult Renewal Academy, partners with The Fuller Center for Housing and connects caring partners who turn their neighborhoods into safe havens of friendship and support. For more information, go to www.sbcr.us.
Contact: David Westerfield, director of communications