Susan Lee, born and raised in New York City, has been a Knicks fan since high school. The greatest Knicks rivalry during that time was against the Pacers. Susan recalls Spike Lee trash talking to Reggie Miller, which made basketball quite entertaining. Though, she has not been following the Knicks since the rivalry ended, watching Lin has re-sparked her interest. Susan says Lin plays with such grace, elegance, and fearlessness -- something that she has not seen on the courts in a while.
The Linsanity phenomenon that is catching media attention has also brought Susan's family together as they cheer for this rising star. From her 63-year father who wanted to celebrate his birthday watching the Knicks versus the Heat while eating Chinese take-out food at their cozy apartment to her 3-year old niece, the excitement is having a cross-generational effect on her family. Traditionally, the family enjoys fine Asian cuisine for her father's birthday. Susan says that everyone was so focused on the game that they barely touched the food. Her niece cheered louder than anyone else in the room.
Lin's integrity on the courts results in more than just winning the game. Susan was so inspired by Lin's humble beginnings and by his family who is now living the classic American dream, that she decided to donate $1 for every point Lin scores this season to her favorite charity -- Nomi Network. Susan supports Nomi Network's growth because the organization is also in its start up stage, led by a group of young professionals, and committed volunteers.
In the span of a little over two years, this anti-human trafficking organization has already secured a grant from the Department of State to launch a training program for at-risk women and survivors of human trafficking and expanded programs into India. Nomi Network's strategy is to forge partnerships among private corporations and non-governmental organizations that are willing to help serve the women and expand their employment channels. Susan is leveraging Facebook to rally people to bring awareness to both new phenomenons.
Currently, 22,000 non-profit organizations have a presence using Facebook pages. Lin also has a Facebook page in which hundreds of thousands of fans comment on his every move. Susan believes that Facebook is a powerful tool to generate awareness and resources towards non-profit organizations that are flying under the radar but making a substantial impact. Susan's efforts has mobilized a few of her friends to join her in making the pledge to donate $1 dollar for every point Lin scores this season Nomi Network. In merely two weeks, she has raised hundreds of dollars. Susan says that this has been effortless on her part because she simply posts on Facebook and fans of Lin and Nomi Network sign up. Susan's friends commend her for making fundraising fun -- they are watching a team they love and making a difference while doing it.
Follow Diana Mao on Twitter: www.twitter.com/dmnominetwork