Christon Handing Out Hoop Tips and Shoes in Algeria

New York, NY - November 28, 2005 - Shameka Christon recently set out for Algeria to share her love and knowledge of basketball with the youth there. Earlier this month, the second-year Liberty guard/forward, along with retired NBA player Sam Perkins and the Detroit Shock's Andrea Stinson, was part of an official delegation sent to the African country by the U.S. Department of State. The group put on clinics and interacted with Algerian youth in the hopes of teaching them both basketball and life lessons.

The Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) teamed up with the NBA and its corporate partner Reebok to send the basketball stars to Algeria to conduct clinics for boys and girls ages 7-17. The trio held four different clinics throughout Algiers and Tipaza, each for 60-100 children. The events included technique drills and team building activities, and Christon, Perkins and Stinson emphasized to the youth how the skills needed to succeed in basketball can also help them succeed in life. While in Algeria, the hoop stars also handed out thousands of pairs of new shoes to the local youth, donated by Reebok and the NBA.

Besides the outing in Algeria, the ECA and the U.S. embassies in Nigeria and Senegal also worked with the NBA and Reebok to bring these clinics to their countries. The first clinic took place in August in Nigeria with NBA'er Obinna Ekezie. The second took place in Senegal in October with Jim Jackson of the Phoenix Suns and WNBA legend Cynthia Cooper. Overall, more than 12,000 youth in Nigeria, Senegal and Algeria have received new basketball shoes as part of this initiative.