Ground Report | New Delhi: NBA star Kyrie Irving; NBA superstar Kyrie Irving recently set up a solar water station in a drought-prone desert in Pakistan’s southern Sindh province. Irving’s charity, the KAI Family Foundation, partnered with the Jal Sahayata non-profit Water Project to provide clean drinking water, food sustainability enhancement, and solar support to Rohal village in the semi-arid Tharparkar district.
Sunny Khan, a recent college graduate and co-founder of Paani Project, is a staunch NBA fan, reached out to the KAI Family Foundation to collaborate. “The fact that Kyrie Irving, in the middle of [an NBA] season, was able to take the time to listen to [executive director] and sign everything,” Khan said.
Speaking about the newly unveiled centre, Rohal Village Committee President Arjun Meghwar told Vice World News, “Before this solar well, our entire village was fetching water from open dug wells, and the water was contaminated and Wasn’t clear.”
“The lives of the women were at risk. Many women and children fall into the well while fetching water. Now they are safe and have clean drinking water near their homes. Earlier, they were traveling around 2 to 3 kms for 10 liters of water in a bucket,” said Meghwar.
Scorching sun, scanty rains and crop failure are common in Tharparkar, the country’s largest desert area. With a population of over 1.6 million, 87 percent of whom are considered poor, the desert district is grappling with acute water shortages, food insecurity and infrastructural development.
“Water is very important in Pakistan. At this point in time, we are facing water scarcity, but we are gradually moving into a water-stress situation,” said Amanullah Khan, the UN Development Program’s Assistant Resident Representative on Environment and Climate Change in Pakistan.
In addition to helping nearly 1,000 villagers in Rohl with a water plant, Irving’s charity is also helping people with solar-powered needs like electricity for lighting and fans in local schools and mosques. They are also providing handlights to help local children walk around the village, as well as food sustainability on a small farm.
Irving’s organization was approached by 22-year-old Sonny Khan, who recently graduated from the University of Michigan and is the founder and director of the Water Project. (NBA star Kyrie Irving)
“Kyari has always been one of my favorite players. One day I was just scrolling online and came across his true track record of philanthropy. I was surprised to see how much work she has done in Africa, the work she has done for low-income communities, and the work she has done towards women empowerment,” a Pakistani-American, Sunny Khan was quoted as saying had gone.
“I went straight to his foundation and told him about water. How do we have $0 in overhead costs. How do we give all our money to people? How do we record everything from start to finish? How We’ve Raised Over $1 Million As Volunteers For Marketing With No Money. “I think our story of having kids ‘who just wanted to help’ resonated.”