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SBD Global/July 3, 2013/People and Pop Culture

Yao's Charity Organization Attracts Current, Former NBA Stars To China

Yao Ming, center, and Tracy McGrady coach the Yao Foundation Charity Game Monday in Beijing.
Former NBA player YAO MING "has been enjoying his transition into charity organizer," according to Sun Xiaochen of CHINA DAILY. As the initiator of the Yao Foundation Charity Game, Yao's participation in the program "has changed hugely since his retirement from basketball" in '11. What used to be just shooting hoops to entertain the fans in the gala game "now involves inviting other NBA stars, maintaining sponsor relations and even bargaining for the best venue rents." Yao: "I've already eaten a couple of take-away box meals with our staff members and am more aware of how tough it is to organize an event like this." Chicago Bulls player JOAKIM NOAH said, "We are very privileged to be able to play basketball and help the kids in China. I just started my foundation and it's a great learning opportunity from guys like Yao. Obviously, Yao is more than just a basketball player, he is an ambassador of the sport." All proceeds from ticket revenue for the charity game themed "All For Children" will go to the Yao Foundation Hope Primary School Basketball Season, which "aims to provide a better future for children in poor areas by improving public welfare and sports programs" (CHINA DAILY, 7/1).
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