On the morning of opening night, we’ve got an early announcement. The LA Kings and the CalHOPE Program announced this morning a new partnership that will see CalHOPE named as the first-ever helmet partner of the Kings, for the 2020-21 season.
From the team’s official release –
The LA Kings have launched a historic new partnership with the CalHOPE Crisis Counseling Program (CalHOPE), a California-based mental health and wellness initiative that will be named the first-ever, official helmet partner of the NHL team for the 2020-21 season. CalHOPE serves as a crisis support resource for communities impacted by public health emergencies (PHE) or national disasters, and is run by the California Department of Health Care Services. The landmark agreement, brokered by AEG Global Partnerships, is CalHOPE’s first partnership with a professional sports franchise in Southern California and will focus on helping educate and connect those in need with vital mental health and wellness resources during these challenging times. The deal also marks the first time in franchise history that the LA Kings will feature a partner brand of any kind on the team’s equipment.
To kick off the partnership, LA Kings players will debut the new helmets featuring the CalHOPE logo at the start of the upcoming NHL season, which begins today, January 14. LA Kings fans can get their first look at the new design tonight, as the Kings-Wild game will be broadcast live from STAPLES Center on FOX Sports West. Game time is 7 p.m. with the LA Kings Live pregame show on FSW starting at 6:30 p.m. CalHOPE’s brand marks will be prominently displayed on both sides of the players’ helmets for all regular season home and away games during the 2020-2021 season. As the exclusive helmet partner, CalHOPE will also receive never-before-seen virtual on-ice signage and extensive digital branding across the team’s online channels.
The global COVID-19 pandemic is a major public health emergency that has taken a significant toll on both the mental and emotional well-being of many people around the world. This is particularly true in California, where millions of people have been battling the crisis together for more than ten months dealing with numerous challenging issues including increasing amounts of stress and anxiety, in many instances. In moments like this, CalHOPE focuses on building community resiliency and promotes a message that people are not alone and that hope will persevere. The program is helping Californians get through the pandemic with free outreach, crisis counseling, and support services including the California Surgeon General’s Playbook, which offers stress management tips. Additionally, there’s a telephone “warm line,” which connects the public to trained staff with more resources. The CalHOPE website, www.calhope.org, also provides a wealth of information to support and educate visitors on managing stress, anxiety and depression.
“If you are experiencing stress or anxiety as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, you are not alone. Due to the stress of the pandemic, your body may be making more stress hormones than usual, which can lead to worsening of physical and/or mental health problems, from diabetes to heart disease to anxiety or depression,” said Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, California Surgeon General. “The resources at CalHOPE.org can help. While the COVID-19 vaccines have arrived to help protect us, caring for our mental and emotional health continues to be critical.”
This new partnership underscores the LA Kings’ commitment to promoting the overall mental health and emotional well-being, not only of the team and its staff, but also the many fans across Southern California. As part of the agreement, the Kings will produce PSA content throughout the season to help drive awareness for CalHOPE’s services and educate fans across the greater Los Angeles region on the importance of both mental and emotional health. The PSA will reach fans through LA Kings official digital channels including the team’s YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages, and LAKings.com.
“Our new partnership with CalHOPE goes well beyond the ice, which is especially important to us during these unprecedented times,” said LA Kings President and Hockey Hall of Famer Luc Robitaille. “The LA Kings have always believed we have a responsibility to help promote positive resources to assist our community, which has been an important part of our mission for more than 50 years. It is exciting that both the Kings and CalHOPE share common values when it comes to serving, and that both organizations believe in the importance of helping those in need. This is a special, unique way that we can help empower them with the resources and opportunities to better so many lives.”
In addition, the LA Kings, along with the Kings Care Foundation and CalHOPE, will team up for a free-to-the-public community event that will focus on supporting the mental well-being of the greater Los Angeles community. The event will be scheduled this season at the Toyota Sports Performance Center (COVID-19 restrictions permitting) or will be held virtually.
“DHCS is proud to partner with the Los Angeles Kings,” said Dr. Jim Kooler, Assistant Deputy Director of Behavioral Health. “Everyone has been affected in some way by the pandemic. Even those who have not been infected and have not lost their income, are still dealing with stresses such as distance learning for children, and caring for elderly parents. CalHOPE is a resource for anyone feeling stress.”
“We are incredibly proud to be highlighting a critically important resource like CalHOPE on our players’ helmets this season,” said Josh Veilleux, senior vice president, AEG Global Partnerships. “The LA Kings recognize that these are unusually trying times for many of our most loyal supporters and we remain committed to serving the people of Los Angeles. This unique collaboration, which was put together with the help of Scott Emery on the Global Partnerships team, allows us to shine a light on the importance of mental health during this time, and helps us give back in a meaningful way to the communities we serve and the people who need these resources most right now.”
CalHOPE has had a significant impact on California residents, particularly over the last few months. Already it has seen over 490,000 users on its website to date and the campaign itself has delivered over 400 million impressions across digital, radio, and television since its launch in June of 2020, proving that there is a real and immediate need for this type of support now more than ever before across the state of California.
For more information, CalHOPE resources may be accessed by calling the program’s warm line at (833) 317-HOPE (4673) or by visiting www.calhope.org.