“All Mom-Athletes Need This”- Allyson Felix Launches a Childcare Grant Inspired From Her Fallout With Nike

Published 07/12/2021, 2:14 PM EDT
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – AUGUST 20: Allyson Felix of the United States reacts after winning gold during the Women’s 4 x 400 meter Relay on Day 15 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium on August 20, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)


After Nike and Allyson Felix had an explosive end to their partnership in 2019, Felix went ahead and signed with the upcoming women’s athletic wear brand, Athleta. Along with Felix, Athleta has grown and even roped in Simone Biles as well. Now Athleta and Felix have focused on giving important aid to athlete mothers who need some support with their career and childcare.

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Allyson Felix takes a victory lap after placing second in the women’s 400m during the US Olympic Team Trials at Hayward Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Athleta and Felix have started a childcare grant called ‘The Power of She Fund’ for athlete mothers. This grant will provide childcare support to those athletes when they go to compete in various competitions. It is a $200,000 grant. Felix herself is a mother and hence understands the need for support to continue excelling.

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“It was important to me and to Athleta that our partnership reflects that I am more than just an athlete. But not everyone has access to this type of support from a partner or sponsor. These grants are about showing the industry that all mom-athletes need this same comprehensive support to be able to participate in their athletic endeavors,” Allyson Felix said.

Allyson Felix wins the women’s 400m in 50.99 during the US Olympic Team Trials at Hayward Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The first recipients of the grant are nine athletes out of whom six are Tokyo Olympics 2021 bound. Each of these athletes will receive $10,000 to help with childcare as they travel across the globe for their careers. The next recipients will be announced in October.

What happened between Allyson Felix and Nike?

Allyson Felix and Nike were associated for over a decade until they ended their partnership in 2019. Felix and Nike had tense contract negotiations in which the brand introduced a 70 percent pay cut and provided no support for Felix who was pregnant at that time.

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Soon the contract wasn’t about money for Felix but was about helping the pregnant athletes. Despite Nike announcing 18 months of support to pregnant athletes, Felix rejected all of their offers. She then went ahead and signed with Athleta that offered her full support and many post-pregnancy benefits that secured her future. Now Felix is the face of the brand and even has her own sneaker brand, Saysh.

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Bhavishya Mittal

1226 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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