CB and MLSE Foundation collaborate to support Canadian Senior Women’s National Team athletes and their individual efforts to help grow the game for girls and women.
TORONTO (February 7, 2024) —With a shared commitment to growing and supporting the women’s game, Canada Basketball (CB) and MLSE Foundation, the charitable arm of the Toronto Raptors, announced today a partnership to support Canadian Senior Women’s National Team athletes and collaborative efforts to help grow #madlove for the game.
This partnership will provide financial support, through grants, offered to active Canadian Senior Women’s National Team athletes to support their endeavours (i.e., camps, clinics, and/or events) to grow the game for girls and women in Canada.
“Year over year, we continue to see exciting strides in the women’s game and, together with Canada Basketball, we are proud to empower our own Canadian Senior Women’s National Team athletes to lead the next generation of players forward,” said Shannon Hosford, Chief Marketing Officer, MLSE and member of Canada Basketball’s Board of Directors. “We look forward to supporting these visionary athletes’ ideas and collectively growing youth’s engagement with the game on and off the court."
Supported initiatives through the collaborative CB and MLSE Foundation grant program are required to take place in Canada and prioritize serving youth, specifically girls and women between the ages of 5-29. Initiatives will also focus on encouraging both on-court participation and off-court engagement in sport through basketball.
“The MLSE Foundation is committed to helping ‘change the game’ and with their continued support of our Senior Women’s National Team athletes and their individual community initiatives, they are backing up that promise,” said Michael Bartlett, President & CEO of Canada Basketball. “Our team’s #madlove mantra – if you can see it, you can be it – speaks to the power of strong role models and this generous donation will undoubtedly have a lasting, positive impact on countless young women and girls across our country.”
Eligible applicants from the Senior Women’s National Team will be invited to complete and submit a short application for review and consideration for receiving funding support for their initiative. Successful applicants will be notified of decisions and receive funding distribution in Spring 2024.
The partnership comes after Canada Basketball, MLSE and the Toronto Raptors announced a shared commitment to growing and supporting women’s basketball nationwide in November 2023, building on years of collaboration between the organizations. To recognize Canada Basketball’s long-standing supporters, the shorts of Canada’s Senior Women’s National Team uniform feature the Toronto Raptors logo for all games taking place ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
As part of their strategic partnership to grow the game of basketball in the country, MLSE and Canada Basketball also previously collaborated to develop #madlove, a cross-channel awareness campaign to inspire and rally Canadians together for female-identifying athletes in basketball and beyond. At the inaugural GLOBL JAM in 2022, the Raptors hosted #madlove Night to unite athletes, fans, influencers, organizers and allies as Canada faced France.
The Senior Women’s National Team tips-off against Hungary on February 8th to start a three-game tournament at the FIBA Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Sopron, Hungary. A top-three finish in the competition will see Canada secure a berth in the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, as they look to advance to their fourth consecutive Olympics. The tournament will be broadcast live on Sportsnet and Sportsnet Plus.
Canada’s Senior Women’s National Team is ranked fifth in the FIBA World Ranking Women, presented by Nike, after an update to the rankings following the FIBA Women's Continental Championships.