AUGUST 3, 2015 – The Charlotte Hornets and forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist have teamed up in support of Bee Mighty during the month of August to help former Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) graduates and their families.

Bee Mighty is a not for profit fund administered by Novant Health that provides grants to former NICU babies and their families for medical equipment and therapy. Once discharged from the NICU, these babies are much more likely to need therapy or equipment – which is oftentimes not covered by insurance – for developmental delays.

Today, Bee Mighty launches a month-long fundraising drive throughout the month of August and later in the month it will celebrate the funding of the 100th local family to receive a grant. The Hornets’ Kidd-Gilchrist, who was born prematurely and spent some time with Bee Mighty kids last season, will serve as an ambassador for the month-long campaign, encouraging those in the Charlotte community to assist in the fundraising drive. Additionally, he will be in attendance for the 100th grant donation. The Hornets will match up to $5,000 for all donations made to the Bee Mighty campaign. Those interested in donating can do so online at beemighty.org.

“I’m thrilled to be teaming up with Bee Mighty to help raise awareness for NICU graduates,” said Kidd-Gilchrist. “I was a preemie and spent time in the NICU after I was born so this is something that means a lot to me. It was great to spend time last year with some Bee Mighty alumni and I look forward to meeting more grads later this month.”

Heather Hucks, chair of Bee Mighty and mom to a NICU grad said, “These kids fight so heartily, against the odds, just to make it out of the NICU. When parents finally get to bring their baby home only to realize that insurance may not cover the therapy or equipment their child needs, it can be so frustrating. So, Bee Mighty couldn’t be happier that MKG and the Hornets are partnering with us!”

The Hornets have been involved with Bee Mighty the past three years, and serve as one of the presenting partners of the organization’s annual gala, Bee Something for Bee Mighty, which will take place on Nov. 14 in Charlotte, to coincide with World Prematurity Day.

“Novant Health is so excited to be part of this remarkable initiative with two of our most valued partners. The Charlotte Hornets and Bee Mighty are incredible advocates for the children of our community and we are grateful for their commitment to our mighty warriors,” said Art Gallagher, Vice President of Novant Health Foundation.

About Bee Mighty
Bee Mighty was founded by Candace and Michael Richter whose son, Shaw, was born at 27 weeks and is a NICU grad from Charlotte. Bee Mighty grants, which range from $200-$5,000 depending on need, are given to local families in greater Mecklenburg and surrounding counties. Bee Mighty believes that traditional and alternative therapy can make a difference for a child facing developmental delays, and therefore covers both. Thus far, Bee Mighty has raised more than $200,000 from community donors. For more information about Bee Mighty, please visit beemighty.org.

About Hornets Sports & Entertainment
Hornets Sports & Entertainment owns the Charlotte Hornets and operates Charlotte’s Time Warner Cable Arena.  The Charlotte Hornets are a member of the NBA’s Southeast Division.  Owned by NBA Legend Michael Jordan, the Hornets organization strives to deliver a relentless attack on the court, an unmatched experience in the stands and a positive impact throughout the community.  The name of the city’s original NBA team from 1988-2002, the Hornets moniker returned to Charlotte in May 2014, uniting the rich history of NBA basketball in the Carolinas.  Time Warner Cable Arena is the premier destination for sports and entertainment in the Carolinas, hosting over 150 sporting events, concerts and family shows annually.  For more information, please visit hornets.com or timewarnercablearena.com.

About Novant Health
Novant Health is a four-state integrated network of physician practices, outpatient centers and hospitals that deliver a seamless and convenient healthcare experience to our communities. The Novant Health network consists of more than 1,200 physicians and 26,000 employees who make healthcare remarkable at more than 500 locations including 14 medical centers, three hospitals, and hundreds of outpatient facilities and physician clinics. Headquartered in Winston-Salem, N.C., Novant Health is committed to making healthcare remarkable for our patients and our communities serving over four million patients annually.

For More Information Contact:
Mike Cristaldi, Charlotte Hornets, 704-688-8866, mcristaldi@hornets.com
Heather Hucks, Bee Mighty Contact, 704-806-4593 heathersf5@msn.com