PORTLAND, Ore. – A game-night partnership between the Trail Blazers and Mercy Corps galvanized $65,000 in support for Haitian earthquake victims. The Trail Blazers put out the call Friday, in preparation for its Jan. 15 game.
"Fans donated what they could, in amounts ranging from $1 to $3,000," said a Trail Blazers spokesperson.
Fans attending Friday night's Portland Trail Blazers game against the Orlando Magic raised more than $49,000 by halftime to assist the Haiti earthquake response. The Trail Blazers professional basketball team matched the first $16,000 donated by fans, bringing the grand total just over $65,000.
"This is a testament to the character of our fans," Trail Blazers President Larry Miller said in a prepared statement. "Our hearts go out to the people of Haiti, and we are among the many keeping them in our thoughts and prayers."
Donations at the Rose Garden came in response to the 7.0 earthquake that rocked the Caribbean nation of Haiti, near Port-au-Prince, on Tuesday. The devastation caused urgent need for safe water, temporary shelter systems, essential medical supplies and additional services to the displaced to aid in relief efforts.
The National Basketball Association and National Basketball Players Association are contributing $1 million to support the relief efforts. Additionally, the NBA and the Players Association are joining forces with UNICEF and other relief agencies to provide emergency assistance to the estimated three million victims.