After struggling to figure out where he fit in during his first few season in the NBA, Jusuf Nurkić has found a home in Portland with the Trail Blazers. And thanks in part to his success in Portland, he’s able to help others find homes as well.
The 7-0 center from Bosnia and Herzegovina recently purchased a home for a struggling family in his native country with the assistance of the Pomozi.ba Association, a nonprofit that “helps vulnerable people throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina and beyond.”
“After he saw the sad story of the Memisevic family, our national team member and NBA player, Jusuf Nurkic, bought them a house no less!” the organisation said.
The mother in the family, Jasmina, lost her leg a decade ago after stepping on a landmine and takes care of her 11-year-old son, Adin, who has a heart condition. Her husband, Edvin, works odd jobs to provide for the family.
The family used to sleep on the floor of a run-down house without running water, a bathroom and nearly any furniture.
Nurkic contacted Pomozi.ba after seeing how they live. The family received the key to their new home beginning of this week.
“Jusuf is a friend of our organization, and he is a person who helps more in secret than publicly, but from time to time we manage to persuade him to publish some of his good deeds, primarily to encourage others to do good,” the organisation said.
According to Nurkić, who generally prefers to keep his philanthropy out of the public eye, he was moved to help the Memisevic’s in part because he saw himself in their son, Adin.
“I bought the house for the family who was really struggling back home,” said Nurkić via text message. “This family’s situation hit me hard. I saw a similarity. When I was growing up as a kid I never have my own room. This family has a kid and his only wish was to have his own room.”
Thanks to Nurkić, that wish has been granted. And while he would usually prefer to keep his good deeds quiet, he hopes that perhaps assisting the Memisevic’s might inspire others to do something similar.
“The main thing for me is to encourage people to help each other,” said Nurkić via text. “Because at the end of the day, every act of kindness will help make a better world.”