Serena Williams, the worldwide tennis mega star, and The Serena Williams Fund proudly announced a grant to The Caliber Foundation, an organization focused on the victims, families and communities damaged by illegal gun violence in America. The reigning number one women’s tennis player excitedly announced this partnership at the home of Marc Leder, Co-Chief Executive Officer of Sun Capital Partners, on Dec. 12, and shared an emotional moment with Jessica Mindich, founder of The Caliber Foundation.
“When someone is killed or wounded through acts of senseless violence, there are many victims. Aside from the person whose life was lost, there are the children, families and communities left struggling for answers or simply left with a hole in their heart,” said Williams at the kick-off event. “We are proud to support The Caliber Foundation, which shares our goal of mending hearts and building futures”
The gun homicide rate in the United States for teens and young adults ages 15 to 24 is estimated to be 43 times higher than the combined rate for 23 other industrialized nations and gun violence remains the leading cause of death for black teens ages 15-19. By coming together, these collaborators will fund and promote cultural events, educational initiatives, family activities, support local gun buyback programs and advocate for the reduction of illegal guns in circulation.
The Caliber Foundation was created by Jessica Mindich, the founder of Jewelry for a Cause, a company that uses jewelry as a fundraising tool for a wide variety of worthy causes. One of their retail lines, the Caliber Collection, is jewelry made with the serial numbers from illegal guns and the metal from shell casings swept from crime scenes in cities across America.
This jewelry creates a virtuous cycle to promote peace by using a portion of the proceeds to fund voluntary gun buyback and amnesty programs. Mrs. Mindich is also the founder of the Raise The Caliber initiative, a national advocacy campaign to end illegal gun violence. Its efforts have already made an impact in Newark, New Jersey, Detroit, Michigan, Hartford, Connecticut and the San Francisco Bay Area.
“For The Caliber Foundation’s work to be endorsed by Serena and The Serena Williams Fund is, quite simply, monumental. Serena herself is such a powerful positive role model for at risk youth in America,” said Mindich. “We are extraordinarily humbled to be given the opportunity to break the cycle of violence and pain caused by illegal guns that Serena and her family know all too well.”