Cleveland Browns helmet during a game against the Chicago Bears
© Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

As the global community continues to deal with the COVID-19 epidemic, the sports world is stepping up to do its part to help local communities. On Monday, the Cleveland Browns announced that owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam are pledging $1.5 million throughout Ohio towards relief funds.

The incredible donation will come from the Haslam Sports Group, founded by Dee and Jimmy, on behalf of the Haslam family. The Haslam 3 Foundation will put $1 million towards the Greater Cleveland COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund, while $500,000 will go to the Columbus Foundation’s Emergency Response Fund, per the team’s statement.

“We are humbled by the tremendous work of people around the world in their efforts to help those impacted by COVID-19 and we wanted to try to positively impact those affected in our own communities of Cleveland and Columbus,” Dee and Jimmy Haslam said, via press release. “We are grateful for the individuals who are putting others before themselves and for the sacrifices they are making.”

The Greater Cleveland COVID-19 Response Fund complements the work done by Ohio’s public health officials and helps increase local capacity to help address each aspect of the outbreak. The $1 million is pledged to provide grant awards to local non-profit organizations in the community.

The Columbus Foundation’s Emergency Response Fund aids non-profit organizations that respond to the spread of COVID-19 and are dealing with financial challenges to the ongoing epidemic.

Haslam joins Carolina Panthers owner David A. Tepper, who donated $2.65 million, and Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank, donating $5.4 million, in a wave of incredible gestures by NFL players and owners to help their local communities.

Washington Redskins running back Adrian Peterson also donated $100,000 to help combat COVID-19 and Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield donated $50,000 to local food banks in Cleveland.

According to the latest information from Johns Hopkins University, there are more than 35,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States as of Monday. There are currently 351 confirmed cases in Ohio, per the Department of Health.

Matt Johnson
NFL, MLB & college football writer for Sportsnaut. Graduated from San Diego State University with BA in Journalism, 2019. Grew up in Sacramento, now based in Indianapolis. Seen on MSN. Previously: eDraft, The Connection, With the First Pick