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Dunking against human trafficking

The US Embassy in Athens is pleased to announce a joint effort with the State Department’s Sports United Office, and the National Basketball Association (NBA) that brings current and former professional basketball players from the NBA and the WNBA to Greece to engage with the Greek youth on basketball courts in Athens promote sportsmanship and raise awareness of modern day slavery -- trafficking in persons. After an April 1 even in Thessaloniki, the team -- comprising Ashley Robinson, who plays center for the Washington Mystics, and Tracy Murray, the coach of the Tulsa Shock and former Houston Rockets star, will be joined by former NBA champion Peja Stojaković in Greece, the birthplace of the Olympic Games -- is due in Athens on April 3.

NBA players will participate in the “Human Slavery -- Break the Chain” basketball event at the Athens Olympic Basketball Arena (OAKA), along with many other prominent Greek athletes and artists. The Special Secretariat of Sports and Nutrition of the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Education, and the Hellenic Center for Disease Control & Prevention, are organizing this celebrity basketball game and show, to inform and engage more than 5,000 students in the fight against Trafficking in Persons (TIP).

The event will be held under the auspices of the President of the Hellenic Republic, Karolos Papoulias, and is organized with the support of the US Embassy, the International Organization for Migration, the Hellenic Transplant Organization, and UNICEF.

During their visit to Greece, the three basketball stars will also meet with representatives of organizations working on TIP. They will also engage directly with Greek elementary and high school students and conduct sports clinics in Athens and Thessaloniki. These sports clinics serve as a tool to teach important values and life skills such as respect, teamwork, inclusion, acknowledgement of rules, discipline and self-confidence, conveying lessons about how success in athletics can be translated into the development of life skills and achievement in the classroom.

The event starts at 10 p.m. and is by invitation only.

ekathimerini.com , Monday April 2, 2012 (16:45)  
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