By Christine Valdez
Web Production Assistant
NBA guard Randy Foye may spend most of his time with the Denver Nuggets, but when’s he off the court, he gives back to the community that he grew up in.
After being drafted into the NBA in 2006, Newark native Foye began the Randy Foye Foundation in order to give back and help the community he grew up in. Since the creation of the foundation, Foye has hosted several programs and events, including Regina’s Run, the annual 5K run/walk at Branch Brook Park in Newark. This year’s 5K is scheduled for Sunday, June 1 at 9 a.m.
The upcoming Regina’s Run will be the fourth one for the Randy Foye Foundation, named after Foye’s mother.
“My mom’s name is Regina Foye and my mom is deceased but I just thought that it would be cool to do it,” said Foye.
The run is set to raise funds for the Children’s Hospital of New Jersey at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center. Beth Israel has partnered with the Randy Foye Foundation for previous events. The medical center recently awarded Foye the man of the year award for his work with the hospital and Newark as a whole.
“I just thought that it would be cool to do it and help give back to the Children’s Hospital of New Jersey because we also work with Beth Israel,” said Foye.
The response over the years to Regina’s Run has grown.
“It’s been unbelievable, the turnout has been unbelievable. Lots of friends and family,” said Foye.
Over the years, Regina’s Run has seen participation from attendees in various age groups. According to the president of the Randy Foye Foundation, Chris Champeau, local college runners and a few runners from the Jersey Shore are among the participants.
Half of the funds raised during the run go to the Children’s Hospital of New Jersey, and the other half benefit the Randy Foye Foundation. Over the years, the foundation has established a mentoring program, Assist 4 Life, to mentor and assist kids within the community, mostly children from fifth to eighth grade. Through the Assist 4 Life program, kids have attended field trips, Broadway shows and even trips to the Jersey Shore.
“We developed the mentoring program where we bring in people from various business worlds. All types of professionals meet with the kids and show them things they can do,” said Champeau.
Through the mentoring program, kids submit essays for a chance to meet with Foye. About eight are selected, according to Champeau. When he comes back to New Jersey, Foye says that he personally sits with the kids and talks to them about their progress in the program.
“The kids love it. I mean just the looks on their faces is unbelievable, the things they get to do and the help, that’s what makes it all worthwhile,” said Champeau.
Foye established the Randy Foye Foundation his second year in the NBA to give back to the city that he grow up in as well as the state of New Jersey. While he is away from the Garden State as he plays throughout the year in the NBA, Foye has also done charitable work outside of New Jersey.
During last year’s Regina’s Run, Champeau said that the foundation was able to raise about $15,000. He hopes to raise more money this year to improve facilities at the hospital and better the mentoring program.
For Foye, the event helps the community, but he also wants to see participants at the run enjoy themselves.
“We just want to see people come out, just have fun and enjoy themselves and just understand what it’s for,” said Foye.
More information about Regina’s Run and the Randy Foye Foundation can be found on the foundation’s website.