SBD/November 14, 2013/People and Pop Culture

Heat Coach Erik Spoelstra Steps Up For Philippines Typhoon Relief Efforts

Heat coach ERIK SPOELSTRA, whose mother is from the Philippines, appears in a PSA from the U.S. Fund for UNICEF to "help raise funds for Philippines relief efforts for areas ravaged by Super Typhoon Haiyan," according to Ira Winderman of the South Florida SUN-SENTINEL. Spoelstra in '09 "embarked on the first of four trips to the Philippines." The NBA and the NBPA on Sunday "donated $250,000 to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF" in support of the organization's efforts in the Philippines. The donation "will aid UNICEF in providing children and families with immediate necessities including food, water, and medicine." Another "similar donation followed, as did one on behalf of the Heat and Carnival Cruise Lines," which both are operated by Heat Owner MICKY ARISON (South Florida SUN-SENTINEL, 11/14). The AP's Tim Reynolds noted Spoelstra "filmed the spot on Monday, and production was turned around in less than 48 hours." Spoelstra said, "I feel a responsibility to help make people aware of how catastrophic this storm was to Filipinos in that region, but more importantly how people can assist with the relief. People want to help. They just want to know how." The Heat before Tuesday's game against the Bucks "held a moment of silence for those lost and affected by the storm." Spoelstra has "often spoken of the pride he takes in his Filipino-American heritage, and when he was approached to help with relief efforts, he did not hesitate to commit" (AP, 11/13). In Miami, Hannah Sampson noted Carnival and the Heat "have pledged to give" at least $1M to help those affected by the typhoon (MIAMIHERALD.com, 11/13).
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