Thunder Trio Travels to Africa
Being service-oriented and selfless are traits the Thunder values throughout its organization from top to bottom. Through giving back, Thunder players, coaches and employees build character, bonds with others and find ways to assist those who support the organization.
The bond the Thunder has built with the Oklahoma City community is as strong as ever as the team has stayed active throughout the summer with events in Moore, Carney and El Reno. In the aftermath of the May tornadoes, the Thunder has been in lockstep with families, children and residents to regain a sense of normalcy. The team’s work here in Oklahoma will always be the highest of priorities.
The team and its players are also conscious of its role and influence around the world. That is why Serge Ibaka, Thabo Sefolosha and Hasheem Thabeet, all of whom have roots in Africa, will be traveling to the continent from August 29th-September 1st to take part in the NBA’s Basketball Without Borders program. The event, held in Johannesburg, South Africa, is a basketball camp for 60 of the top 18-and-under players throughout the African continent. In addition to learning the game of basketball, the young participants will be involved in life skills seminars, while the Thunder trio will be working with NBA Cares to give back to communities in need.
Already this summer, Ibaka, a native of the Congo, has completed outreach trips to Angola, Manchester and Barcelona, while Thabeet visited his hometown of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania to take part in the Nothing But Nets initiative.
This isn’t the first time Thunder players have participated in the Basketball Without Borders program. In fact, this time last year, Ibaka, Sefolosha and Nick Collison traveled to South Africa to help grow the game of basketball. Thunder.nba.com got the chance to catch up with the Thunder trio last summer during their time in Africa, resulting in the following two articles documenting their trip.
The Thunder has always supported one another in their altruistic endeavors, and those activities happen throughout the season in addition to the summer. Last February, Sefolosha, whose family comes from South Africa, was joined by Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook as the trio supported a cause championed by Ibaka – a fundraiser to support the Pros For Africa foundation.
As the summer moves along and the Thunder prepares for the beginning of training camp, stay here at thunder.nba.com for information about how the team and its players give back to those in need.