"It's time to level the playing field," writes former world No. 1 Naomi Osaka as she announces the expansion of her Play Academy initiative into Los Angeles and Haiti.

Osaka first launched Play Academy, a collaboration with Nike and Laureus Sport for Good, in an effort to inspire the next generation of women and "level the playing field for girls by increasing girls' participation in sport; investing in fun, positive play experiences that invite young women to become role models; and training coaches in how to create more inclusive play and sport environments."


Play Academy first launched in Tokyo last summer and, according to a press release, its continued expansion "is a testament to Naomi, Nike and Laureus' commitment to Play Academy's goals, and it has earned the support of other companies including Laureus' Global Partner MUFG, Mastercard, BODYARMOR Sports Drink, Yonex and Levi Strauss & Co. that are committed to giving the next generation of girls more opportunities to access and benefit from play and sport."

Osaka began the 2021 season by winning her fourth Grand Slam title at the Australian Open, and rode a 23-match winning streak into the Miami Open. Despite her busy schedule, the Japanese star has nonetheless found time to not only expand her business portfolio but also expand her philanthropic efforts to projects like Play Academy.

"I’m passionate about breaking barriers that girls face when it comes to opportunities to access and benefit from play and sport," Osaka said in a statement. Play Academy’s expansion represents an even greater opportunity to do that.”

Click here to learn more about Play Academy and how to get involved.