About the D12 Foundation

The D12 Foundation is focused on facilitating positive change in the lives of American youth – as well as girls in East Africa – through strategic programmatic and funding partners. Guided by D12 Foundation founder and president, Dwight Howard, we seek to strategically and effectively help close critical community “gaps” by making best use of our unique position and talents, and partnering with individuals and organizations who share our vision in three key areas of focus:

Early Childhood Education & Literacy
Why? “The ripple effect” – High quality early childhood education means:

  • Better achievement in school/higher graduation
    rates/better employment
  • Less drug abuse and crime
  • Lower incidence of incarceration

Dwight Visits Tanzania
Dwight Visits Tanzania

Girls Empowerment through Education in East Africa
Why? Because when you educate a woman, you lift up a nation. Yet:

  • Globally, 62 million girls lack access to education
  • Yet, educated girls reverse extreme poverty rapidly: “invest” 90% of their money in the family (this is 3x the “investment” of men)

Leadership Development
Why? As an Olympian, a #1 draft pick, an 8-time NBA All-Star, Dwight Howard has a wealth of true-to-life experience to share with youth – both those facing challenges, and those on the right path – pertaining to:

  • Being bullied/standing up to bullying
  • Withstanding peer pressure
  • Earning and conveying respect
  • Giving back to one’s community

As one of the most recognizable sports figures in the world, Dwight Howard has built a portfolio of enviable accolades. In addition to his All-Star and Olympic records, Dwight has been recognized 3 times as the NBA Defensive Player of the Year and the recipient of the NBA Community Assist Award, recognizing athletes for their outstanding community support. In April 2015 Dwight tied Moses Malone and Hakeem Olajuwon for the most rebounds in a playoff game in Houston Rockets franchise history.

More than a franchise player, Dwight is a loyal and dedicated father, son, brother, and teammate; who off the court remains focused on supporting and empowering today’s youth with the tools to become successful.

In 2011, the 5-time winner of the DeVos Community Enrichment Award established the D12 Foundation that will continue Dwight’s ongoing initiatives and partnerships with charitable organizations around the globe.

D12 Foundation History

  • Dwight Howard Launches the D12 Foundation

    February 14, 2011

    Following a history of generous giving, Dwight Howard is pleased to announce the launch of his new foundation, the D12 Foundation with "Gifts from the Heart," on Valentine's Day. As we celebrated the launch, D12 Foundation made contributions to organizations close to Dwight's heart and encouraged others to do the same.

  • Dwight Howard Donates $100K for Haiti

    Dwight formed started “The Dwight Howard Fund” to support at-risk children around the world, starting with a $100,000 donation for young earthquake victims in Haiti. The earthquake killed a government-estimated 230,000 people and left more than a million homeless in the Caribbean nation.

    As part of his efforts to help Haiti, Dwight launched a unique micro-giving challenge for Haiti on Pinkdingo.com to raise money to help the children of Haiti affected by the catastrophic January earthquake. In a 'call to action' effort to get lots of people working together to make small contributions to the cause, 2 donors to the Dwight Howard Fund Challenge received a $500 Adidas shopping spree with Dwight himself and a trip to the ’09 NBA Eastern Conference Final, for a minimum donation of just $2.99. As a result, additional donations were made to support Haiti and two lucky winners received a great experience as a result

  • Dwight donates $25,000 to Orlando’s BETA Center

    Dwight Howard smiled from ear to ear as he slid the garish Superman Snuggie on over his arms and wrapped it around his chest. The red, blue and yellow blanket was a gift from Orlando’s BETA Center, but actually it was Dwight who was doing most of the giving on this day.

  • D12 Foundation travels to Tanzania

    In an effort to promote education in a safe environment, Dwight and the D12 Foundation traveled to several regions of Tanzania. Dwight celebrated the groundbreaking of a dormitory he funded at the Kipok Secondary School for Girls in Monduli.

    D12 Foundation travels to Tanzania
  • Dwight Helps Rebuild Alabama

    Dwight and D12 Foundation staff traveled to Alabama to partner with Habitat for Humanity-Greater Birmingham and participate in the rebuilding of ten homes damaged or destroyed by the April 27 tornadoes. In support of the initiative, Dwight called on his fans to assist in these efforts through monetary donating and/or volunteer efforts. Relief efforts not only included rebuilding, Dwight and the staff also toured Tuscaloosa and sites that were heavily damaged, present a check to Tuscaloosa Disaster Relief Fund $10,000 then joined in the Boys State Celebration of food and fun to help bring joy to the families affected.

    Part 1

    Part 2
  • D12 Foundation Celebrity Weekend




  • Block Out Violence

    The D12 Foundation’s “Block Out Violence” Program is a grassroots, student driven competition focused on promoting non-violence, anti-bullying, respect and acceptance, with the goal of creating safe campuses and ultimately, safe communities.

  • The 3-Point Santa Project

    Houston children associated with Child Advocates will experience a special “3-Pointer” executed by Dwight Howard this holiday season.

    Dwight Howard (and his foundation – the D12 Foundation) believes strongly in the importance of early childhood education, supported by reading. Howard says, “Enjoying and learning from a great book is a gift that lasts forever. Reading is critical for kids to be successful in school. We’re thankful to the Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation – and First Lady Barbara Bush – for pulling together such a great list of books for kids. Everyone can participate, by the way, in helping select this year’s ‘MVBs’ – the Most Valued Books on this list. Can’t wait to see which ones win.”

  • Dwight Howard and Barbara Bush team up for Literacy PSA

    The D12 Foundation’s “Block Out Violence” Program is a grassroots, student driven competition focused on promoting non-violence, anti-bullying, respect and acceptance, with the goal of creating safe campuses and ultimately, safe communities.

    Dwight Howard teamed up with the with former First Lady Barbara Bush and the Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation to film two PSA’s at the Toyota Center. Howard helped the 90-year-old Bush around the court and even cuddled up for some sweet promotional photos – both wearing matching Rockets jerseys, of course.

    The joint PSA will encourage viewers to volunteer at a school, library or nonprofit through Connect4Literacy.org, a website created by the Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation, according to the organization’s Facebook.

    Read the full article on

    View photos from the shoot
    Dwight Howard and Barbara Bush team up for Literacy PSA

  • Dwight Howard joins Stephen Colbert for #BestSchoolDay

    DonorsChoose.org kicks off #BestSchoolDay with Stephen Colbert. Celebrities, athletes, business execs and more have joined Colbert's campaign to fund supplies and resources for classrooms in need in need across America.