Bismack Biyombo Takes Kids on Holiday Shopping Spree
By Josh Cohen
Dec. 14, 2017
ORLANDO – Being a positive role model and spreading holiday cheer means a great deal to Orlando Magic center Bismack Biyombo, who has always had a zest for helping children realize their full potential.
When he learned about the Children’s Home Society of Florida, which provides a wide variety of services including adoption and foster care, Biyombo quickly sprang into action to inspire youth and boost their spirits.
The seven-year NBA veteran spent his Thursday evening at a local Target with 30 kids from the Children’s Home Society, surprising them with gifts and taking them on a holiday shopping spree. Biyombo provided dinner for the children and gave each of them a gift bag and a $150 gift card.
“More than anything it’s being able to have fun with them,” he said. “I love kids. I’m passionate about kids. Kids in general because I believe they are the future of the world and our society and we’ve got to find a way to invest in these kids.”
Smiling from ear to ear as he shared stories, joy and laughter with each child, Biyombo says he’s incredibly grateful to be in a position to make such a difference in their lives. He hopes his guidance and ceaseless optimism encourages them all to think positive and shoot for the stars.
“I’m super, super excited about this, about the kids and the opportunity that they have given me to be here with them,” he said. “To see them smile, I think that’s the aspect that’s most satisfying for me, see them being happy, being appreciated, the look in their eyes. I don’t think you can explain that feeling. At the end of the day, it’s just about the kids.”
When Meredith Bekemeyer, charitable giving director at the Children’s Home Society of Florida, heard Biyombo was interested in participating, she was delighted to help organize this event and make it a night none of the kids will ever forget. She knew right away he would have a positive impact on their lives.
“After reading more about his story, it’s really inspiring,” Bekemeyer said. “He’s obviously someone that has faced adversity and challenges in his own life and he’s overcome those and is incredibly successful now and is someone the kids can look up to.”
“This time of year, it’s just incredibly heartwarming,” she added about seeing the smiles on the kids’ faces. “What more can you ask for in terms of holiday cheer and seeing a bunch of kids coming in and they are so excited to meet someone they look up to. Warms my heart and makes me feel good.”
This is the second holiday shopping spree Magic players have participated in this week. On Tuesday, Nikola Vucevic, Elfrid Payton and Marreese Speights united with PepsiCo., helping take 100 children from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida on an unforgettable shopping adventure at a local Walmart.