PORTLAND, Ore. — The players from Portland Thorns FC have selected Mimi’s Fresh Tees to play for in the 2020 Verizon Community Shield. The Verizon Community Shield is a partnership between the National Women’s Soccer League and Verizon, where each of the NWSL’s nine clubs will partner with small businesses or programs in their community. The team with the most points at the end of the Fall Series will be awarded the Verizon Community Shield and the opportunity to present a grant of $25,000 to their community partner, made possible by Verizon. $15,000 and $10,000 will be presented to the second and third-place teams, respectively.
Each of the nine NWSL teams has partnered with a small business or organization in their markets to feature and play for throughout the 2020 NWSL Fall Series. With the help of short vignettes, each club will introduce and tell the story of a business they value and support. These vignettes and stories will be highlighted by the league and teams on social media and more throughout the competition. The winner of the Fall Series will receive the Verizon Community Shield and a generous grant to present to their chosen program thanks to the incredible support of Verizon, who showed their commitment to NWSL through a multi-year deal with the league and also supported NWSL’s 2020 Challenge Cup competition at the beginning of the pandemic. Together as group, we will #KickItLocal to support our growing NWSL community.
“The team is very excited to play for Mimi’s Fresh Tees during the Fall Series for the Verizon Community Shield,” said Thorns FC forward Simone Charley. “Kamelah Adams [owner and designer of Mimi’s] is a great example of someone who not only recognized an issue, but also took action through her work.
“We love her creative ideas on how to continue these conversations and are thrilled to support her positive efforts to impact our community. It is important that the conversations around race continue as these are building blocks to addressing the many systemic issues we are facing in our country.”
Mimi’s Fresh Tees is a Portland-based t-shirt company that amplifies tough social justice conversations and allows people to wear their truth. Motivated by systemic racism her Black son experienced in the education system, owner and designer Kamelah Adams wanted to create a product that brought conversations around discrimination out into the open, in a quick and straightforward way. She started designing t-shirts as a way for people to take a stand, break the silence and start a dialogue by wearing their feelings on their chest. Find more information at https://www.mimisfreshteespdx.com/, on Facebook at MimisFreshTees and Instagram: @mimis_fresh_tees.
“I started Mimi’s Fresh Tees two and a half years ago because I wanted to give people a way to start tough conversations promoting equality and unity because we can only make real change if we have these two things," said Mimi's Fresh Tees owner Kamelah Adams. "We are at a crossroads in our society, while there have been more conversations around social justice, there is also an increase in messages of hate and they're getting louder.
“A partnership with the Thorns helps us share our messages of ‘Unity’ and ‘Make Racism Wrong Again’ on a much larger platform, ensuring our voices aren't silenced and make it known we're still here, fighting for equality side by side, as a community.”
Up next, Thorns FC play host to OL Reign in the NWSL Fall Series on Wednesday, Sept. 30, at Providence Park. The Sept. 30 match kicks off at 7 p.m. (Pacific) and features a streamed broadcast available on Twitch.