Milwaukee Bucks point guard Malcolm Brogdon may be focused on the NBA Eastern Conference Finals, but that doesn’t mean he’s putting everything else on the sidelines. In fact, he’s making the most of the heightened media exposure of the NBA Playoffs to bring awareness to a cause close to his heart — his Hoops₂0 initiative.
Last Friday after defeating the Toronto Raptors, Brogdon joined Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith, Ernie Johnson, and Shaquille O’Neal for their “Inside the NBA” post-game show on TNT. Brogdon used the opportunity to speak about Hoops₂0, a clean water project he founded last year through Waterboys, an initiative established by recently retired NFL player Chris Long.
Known for his unfiltered, often less than charitable sports commentary, Barkley didn’t hesitate to show viewers a more benevolent side. As Brogdon described his efforts to raise funds to build wells in East Africa, Barkley immediately jumped in, pledging to donate $45,000 — the cost to build one well.
Brogdon has also garnered the support of four fellow NBA players — Justin Anderson of the Atlanta Hawks; Anthony Tolliver of the Minnesota Timberwolves; Garrett Temple of the Memphis Grizzlies; and Joe Harris of the Brooklyn Nets. They have been working with Brogdon to reach a goal of raising $225,000 for five wells — a goal they’ve now surpassed with the help of Barkley.
A native of Atlanta, Brogdon travels every year to Tanzania and other parts of East Africa where water scarcity causes a host of issues that many of us take for granted, such as water-related diseases, which cause nearly one in five deaths among children under five years old, and school absenteeism among girls since they are primarily tasked with water retrieval.
Professional athletes are not the only ones who can help bring clean water to East Africa though. With one $45,000 well serving up to 7,500 people, it costs just $6 to change a life. Learn how you can support Hoops₂0 here.