Tune in as two-time Super Bowl Champion Torrey Smith talks about his work on behalf of the Black Women’s Health Imperative and his devotion to the Level 82 Fund, which he founded to support the programming at Hilton Rec Center in West Baltimore, Maryland.
Torrey was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens and played in the NFL for 8 years before retiring due to injury. He stays active in the community and speaks here about focusing on the things you can control in life.
Co-founded by Torrey and Chanel Smith, LEVEL82 strives to create a gathering space for those who live, work and play in Baltimore City while developing strategically-curated programming to empower the community. Aligned with the mission to leverage the power of collaboration to enable families to reach their full potential, Torrey and Chanel bring their personal experiences, commitment, resources, and passion to the community. In partnership with Baltimore City Recreation and Parks, the Hilton Recreation Center will host LEVEL82 programs including academic support, athletic and enrichment activities, mental health resources, and social services. Together, we will create a more equitable society that we all deserve, want, and need.
About Torrey Smith
Growing up in the Westmoreland County town of Colonial Beach, Torrey Smith learned the importance of responsibility as the child of a single mother. As the oldest, he helped care for and tutor his six younger siblings. He excelled in academics and sports at nearby Stafford High School and attended the University of Maryland on a football scholarship. After graduating in 2010 with a degree in criminology and criminal justice, Smith was drafted as a wide receiver in the second round by the Baltimore Ravens. He helped the team win the Super Bowl in the 2012 season. He later played for the San Francisco 49ers, where he was the team’s 2016 nominee for the National Football League’s Walter Payton Man of the Year Award for commitment to community involvement. He won another Super Bowl ring in 2018 playing a season with the Philadelphia Eagles. After a season with the Carolina Panthers, Smith announced his retirement in September 2019.
Making Baltimore his home, Smith and his wife, Chanel, both the first in their families to attend college, wanted to make a difference in their community, especially with at-risk youth. They started the Torrey Smith Family Fund, which sponsors many dynamic initiatives, including back-to-school and after-school programs; teen mentoring; sports and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) camps; charitable basketball games; and holiday meal and gift programs. A highlight of the organization’s work is the Tevin Jones Memorial Scholarship Fund, named to honor Smith’s late brother. Each year the fund awards $5,000 scholarships to four college-bound students from low-income families in Maryland, Pennsylvania, or Virginia. After learning that his childhood basketball court had been destroyed in a fire, Smith helped fund a new park with a playground, pavilion, and basketball and tennis courts that the town of Colonial Beach dedicated in 2019 as Torrey Smith Recreational Park.
(Courtesy of Changemakers)
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