Muhammad Ali Center gets grant from UPS Foundation to honor Ali's legacy

Muhammad Ali Center
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LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- The Muhammad Ali Center announced a $500,000 grant from the UPS Foundation to honor the legacy of Muhammad Ali on June 20.

The half a million dollars will help fund the Ali Center's education initiatives and programs. Those programs includeUCrew, Generation Ali, its Character Education Program "Creating our Future," and the Muhammad Ali Center of Students.

"Over the past week, the Muhammad Ali Center has been overwhelmed by immense love and generosity from all over the world," Donald Lassere, President and CEO of the Muhammad Ali Center, said. “This outpouring of reverence is certainly a testament to Muhammad Ali's place in history and his message of peace and transformation."

TheUCrewprogram instills in students the tools necessary to conceptualize and launch a small social enterprise; produce and market a product or service; and generate profits that are used to combat social issues such as poverty and hunger. The Generation Ali initiative draws its inspiration from Ali's six guiding principles and fosters a new generation of leaders to find a cause worth fighting for to transform the world in positive and compassionate ways. The "Creating Our Future" program, designed for middle and high school age students, guides youth to explore Ali's principles and utilize them in a life plan in preparation for their futures. The Muhammad Ali Center Council of Students is a youth-led program consisting of a diverse group of dynamic students who participate in service work, learning projects and leadership development.

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Ali's principles include: confidence, conviction, dedication, giving, respect and spirituality. 

The center--founded by Ali and his wife, Lonnie--marked its 10th anniversary in November. It showcases Ali's boxing career with videos and his causes outside the ring as a social activist and humanitarian.

Ali died June 3 at age 74 after a long battle with Parkinson's disease.