Bigger Than Sneakers // John Wall Donates $400,000 To DC Homeless Center

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words // Nick DePaula:

In our ongoing efforts to highlight the good deeds of many of today’s top stars and signature athletes, Washington Wizards point guard and adidas star John Wall is the latest household name to look to enhance the lives of others by providing both his time and money to causes he values.

Wall recently visited Bright Beginnings, a Washington DC area development center that helps homeless children and their families. During that visit, he surprised everyone on hand by announcing he’d be donating $400,000, a generous amount that will greatly benefit the organization.

Bright Beginnings, founded in 1991, has supported the needs and education of more than 2,500 children with families living in shelters or transitional housing through the years.

“Support from individuals like Mr. Wall gives Bright Beginnings the encouragement to continue to provide comprehensive services for homeless children in the District of Columbia,” beams Dr. Betty Jo Gaines, Bright Beginnings’ Executive Director. “It is evident that John Wall is sensitive and concerned about the plight of homeless children in DC and he wants these children to succeed.”

With the help of Wall’s donation, Bright Beginnings will be building an additional second development center on site, slated to open in 2017. The new center will feature a classroom named after Wall. There will also be a celebratory “John Wall, Wall of Achievement” that will highlight the accomplishments of the center’s young students.

He recently spoke with the Washington Post at length to detail the reasoning behind his strong donation.

“I’ve been knowing about Bright Beginnings since my second or third year in the league, and I’ve just been talking to them and doing certain things,” Wall says. “I think it’s just devastating. You already see homeless people out on the streets, that’s tough to see, but you always wonder how they got there; what happened. But then you see the little kids. I never want to see my child, when I have one, on the side of the street not having anywhere to sleep, not having a place to get an education and things like that.

“So I just liked how they’re doing it,” he continued. “They’re giving parents an opportunity to clean themselves up, find a job and just giving those kids an opportunity to get an education and have a place to sleep and food to eat. So I thought it was important to give back to them. God gave me the ability and the talent to play basketball and do something I love. But I think it’s more important and bigger to give back to the community and do certain things and show people that you care, that you’re not just a Hollywood person that doesn’t care about other people’s lives, the less fortunate, because I was in that situation before.”

Much respect John.

For more information on Bright Beginnings, you can visit the center’s website.

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