The USTA announced on Monday that it has donated $500,000 as part of its initial contributions toward immediate Hurricane Harvey relief efforts, with additional funds to come from on-site fundraising at the US Open – including efforts involving five-time US Open champion Jimmy Connors – and future donations to aid those affected by the storm.
On site at the US Open, five-time champion Jimmy Connors is participating in a campaign to raise relief funds through signing autographs and taking photos with fans, all while encouraging them to donate. The USTA will match any funds raised by Connors and will ensure it is all donated directly to the Red Cross for Harvey relief.
Fans at the US Open have also been encouraged to donate to the Red Cross through advertisements of a 1-800 number, a text-to-donate system and RedCross.com, which have appeared on the video boards in all four stadiums and throughout the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center’s grounds.
The USTA has also worked with ESPN to develop messaging for on-screen graphics and other programming encouraging US Open viewers to donate to Harvey relief, including a PSA featuring players John Isner, Madison Keys and Sam Querrey.
Following the $500,000 immediate donation, the USTA will work with the USTA Texas Section to allocate future funds toward upgrades needed for storm-affected tennis facilities.
The USTA Foundation, the national charitable arm of the USTA, is also working with Wilson through its “Ultra Aces” program, in which Wilson will donate $200 to the Foundation for every ace during the tournament hit by a player using Wilson’s new Ultra racket, to direct all of that donation money toward Harvey relief.
“Everyone in Houston affected by Hurricane Harvey is in the hearts and minds of the tennis world in New York,” said Katrina Adams, USTA Chairman of the Board, CEO and President. “Our support has to be both immediate and ongoing, and we encourage everyone to contribute to the efforts to help Houston and assist those whose lives were affected by the storm.”