Programs and Events
US-Based NBA Star Ejike Ugboaja Mentors Youths on Life-Skills and Athletics
On May 28 2012, a U.S. Embassy Vice Consul spoke to more than 80 underprivileged Nigerian youths from around the country at the Ejike Ugboaja Foundation’s sixth annual Youth Empowerment Basketball and American Football Camp. He spoke to the students about the importance of education in creating positive life opportunities and choosing the best path for their future in addition to explaining the process for applying for student visas to the U.S. and answered the students’ questions.
The Foundation was created by Cleveland Cavalier’s forward Ejike Ugboaja, who is the first player in the history of the NBA to be drafted directly from Africa. Its mission is, “To inspire, assist, and provide future Nigerian generations with the tools and resources necessary to pursue their dreams of education and athletics.”
This year the Foundation hosted two camps in Nigeria (Uyo, Akwa Ibom and Abuja), with over 400 students-athletes representing 8 Nigerian states in attendance. The students self-selected to participate and enjoyed the opportunity to be mentored in life-skills and athletics by professional and former-professional athletes. The students also benefited from meeting peers from across the country which served to debunk many of the ethnic/tribal characterizations which have contributed to the current conflict.