Bismack Biyombo is donating $1.3 million of his NBA salary to build a hospital in the Congo to honor his late father.
Bismack Biyombo was born in Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo), discovered as a basketball player in Yemen, recruited to play in Spain, and came to the United States to play in the NBA in 2011. He’s played in several teams, and is currently a starter in the Phoenix Suns. His contract for the 2021-2022 season grants him a $1.3 million salary, and he’s putting the entire thing into this philanthropic venture.
When Biyombo’s father died of long covid in August 2021 at only 61, he took some time off of playing. But it was a desire to honor his father that brought him back to the court, wearing his father’s birthdate – 18 – on his jersey.
“I had a desire to build him something,” he said. “My dad was my first believer. He spent his own money to allow me to follow my dreams.”
“At this point in my life, my career, I think people back home have to find ways to continue to live even in the tough conditions we were in. Obviously now it’s the pandemic. But one of the things is that I want to give these people better conditions by building a hospital that will be named after my dad. I wanted to give them something that will continue to serve people under his name.”
“Hopefully he can save as many lives as we can,” he said. “I know he couldn’t be here, but I’m sure he’s happy on the other side,” he added.
In impoverished DR Congo, Biyombo’s money will go far. He already donated nearly $1 million In medical supplies to aid groups in the country in 2020, via the Bismack Biyombo Foundation he started with in 2016. And now the new hospital will open under his father’s name, François Biyombo.
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