If Children Read 2 Million Books This Summer, Mayor and Idonije Will Participate in the Annual Chicago “Polar Plunge”

See the full interview from Windy City Times:

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Bears star Israel Idonije today issued a friendly challenge to the children participating in “Rahm’s Readers” as part of the start of the first citywide Chicago Summer of Learning: if they read a total of 2 million books, the Mayor, Idonije and Chicago Public Library Commissioner Brian Bannon will jump into Lake Michigan during the annual Chicago Polar Plunge benefiting the Special Olympics. Last summer, Rahm’s Readers read a total of 1.5 million books.

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Congratulations to Our Founder

The Israel Idonije Foundation would like to congratulate our Founder, Israel Idonije who has recently signed a one-year contract with the Detroit Lions!

A personal letter from Israel Idonije to his fans and foundation supporters:

Good Morning,

It is official, I have joined the Detroit Lions.

The past 10 seasons in Chicago have been an incredible experience. It seems like it was just yesterday that at 21 years old I arrived in the big city of Chicago to start my NFL career. Thank you for embracing me while I grew and developed personally and professionally.

I truly appreciate all the support the Israel Idonije Foundation has received.

The Israel Idonije Foundation will always be headquartered in Chicago, with its mission and focus remaining the same. TeamIIF’s leadership will continue the great work of serving in the community and building on all of the successes it has had since it began in 2007. I will still be very much a part of its efforts, and we look forward to continued growth as we carry out our mission of serving communities in Chicago, Winnipeg and West Africa.

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Israel Idonije 2013 All Sports United Humanitarian Award Winner


JUNE 13, 2013, CHICAGO, IL – The 2013 All Sports United Humanitarian Award for Excellence in Sports Philanthropy was presented to NFL veteran Israel Idonije Monday, June 10 at 7 p.m. Peers and philanthropy industry professionals selected Idonije out of the 13 finalists named at the Skyline Club in Indianapolis, IN. The Israel Idonije Foundation (IIF) will receive a customized $100,000 media grant provided by the PVBLIC Foundation.
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Israel Idonije does good on and off the field

Nigerian-born, Canadian-raised Israel Idonije has been an anchor on the Bears defense for nearly a decade. But it’s the issues he’s tackling off the field, through the Israel Idonije Foundation, that’s leaving a lasting impact on underserved communities in Chicago, Winnipeg and Nigeria. The unrestricted free agent and Vocalo’s Brian Babylon join Rick to discuss mentorship in the context of Chicago’s increasingly violent climate.

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Israel Idonije makes the most of his opportunities

Israel Idonije’s path to the NFL was nothing like the ones you hear about year after year. Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Idonije lived there for four years before his parents moved to Brandon, Manitoba. With barely nothing left in the pockets of his parents after the relocation, the Idonije family received some help that has helped turn Israel into the generous human being and athlete that he is today.

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Idonije WLS Sports Interview

Rahm Praises Israel Idonije For Public Service

Israel Idonije is making plenty of waves away from the football for his community service.

Idonije hosted an America’s Sunday Supper event Thursday for the Points of Light organization, along with Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

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Busy Izzy facing NFL free agency

There’s no such thing as an off-season for Israel Idonije.

As soon as the Vincent Massey High School graduate is finished chasing down National Football League quarterbacks each winter, Idonije immerses himself in his charitable and business endeavours as well as preparations for the following season.

Israel Idonije on his recent humanitarian trip to Africa

It’s been one week since I returned from the Israel Idonije Foundation’s (TeamIIF) annual humanitarian trip to Africa, and I’m still on cloud nine. Absolutely everything about the trip — from start to finish — was amazing. This year, after many years of visiting and serving in my home country of Nigeria, TeamIIF had the opportunity to forge a new partnership in a new place: The village of Kobedi, a farming community of approximately 1,700 people in the Sunyani West District of Ghana. The name Kobedi means, “Go and come again to eat,” which references the community’s generous hospitality.

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Nigerian-born Israel Idonije Readies Himself for Annual Africa Trip

Chicago Bears Defensive Lineman Working to Tackle Poverty; Working on Comic Book

Israel Idonije should be consumed with his free agency.

The 32-year-old Chicago Bears defensive lineman should also be thinking about who his new coach will be – should his contract get renewed – and what that new synergy might be like in the next season.

But the two thoughts concerning his professional football career are kind of at the back of his head right now.

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