Smoothie King and Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) share our commitments of empowering people to live active and healthy lifestyles. Through carefully chosen ingredients, including whole non-GMO fruits and organic veggies, Smoothie King smoothies are an integral part of many health and fitness journeys. As our Global Partner since 2018, Smoothie King has played a key role in helping CAF create access to adaptive sports for thousands of people with permanent physical disabilities.
In February 2020 prior to the start of the COVID-19 crisis, CAF showcased our partnership with Smoothie King through an impactful activation at the Smoothie King Center – home of the New Orleans Pelicans. Together we teamed up four Team USA Paralympic Wheelchair Basketball players with four New Orleans Pelicans players for a skills challenge along with local challenged athletes and community guests spectating. The heated competition featured shooting, dribbling, and trivia between team pairs of Steve Serio/Jaxson Hayes, Nate Hinze/Nico Melli, Abby Dunkin/Jahlil Okafor, and Megan Blunk/Zion Williamson.
The following night during the game between the Pelicans and Cavaliers, local challenged athlete and high school senior Ke’Vaughn LaVigne was surprised with his very own Per4Max basketball wheelchair, presented by Smoothie King Chief Marketing Officer, Rebecca Miller. Ke’Vaughn is the first person on record born with his form of Congenital Vertical Talus, an already rare condition that causes bones of the feet to grow in the wrong position. He had discovered the sport of wheelchair basketball two years prior but lacked the resources to reach his highest potential. With a life-changing grant for custom equipment, he can grow as an athlete while getting more involved in his community.
Amplifying moments like the skills challenge and grant presentation through our dedicated partners does so much in helping challenged athletes in their local communities thrive. Providing unique experiences to one family member, one classmate, or one person in a community is empowering all those around to see what’s possible, to change perceptions, to include, and to celebrate others who are different.
Smoothie King is a Presenting Sponsor of the 2020 CAF Community Challenge presented by Vega when support is needed more than ever. From August 8 – October 18, challenged athletes and supporters around the world are embarking together on one unified, extraordinary virtual challenge – run, cycle, swim, roll, and walk millions of miles to help raise millions of dollars.
Not only does this challenge raise critical funds for CAF athletes to purchase adaptive equipment, training, and competition costs in the coming year, but it also provides the community support to be physically active and socially connected through the pandemic. Together with Smoothie King’s impactful partnership and dedication to inspiring healthy lifestyles, more challenged athletes can experience the transformative power of sport.