Kobe Bryant joined NIKE Inc., the world’s largest football company, in a visit to the Football Training Center located in the heart of Soweto, South Africa to help inspire future champions.  Nike recently completed a center to offer 20,000 young footballers per year the opportunity to develop their talent while also having access to HIV/AIDS education through football life skills programming.

“While basketball is my chosen sport, I’ve been a football fan all my life. So to be in South Africa for the first time and see how Nike is utilizing sport to inspire youth and educate them around HIV/AIDS is amazing,” said Kobe Bryant. “It’s crystal clear that this center will help keep kids out of trouble, improve their game, as well as empower them with the life skills they need to live better and HIV free.”

[pullquoteleft]“While basketball is my chosen sport, I’ve been a football fan all my life. So to be in South Africa for the first time and see how Nike is utilizing sport to inspire youth and educate them around HIV/AIDS is amazing,”[/pullquoteleft]

As we have seen on this site Kobe has displayed his personal dedication to fighting HIV/AIDS by sporting (NIKE)RED laces on the basketball court. The laces are the centerpiece of Nike’s Lace Up, Save Lives campaign. Conducted in partnership with (RED), the initiative offers individuals the opportunity to purchase (NIKE)RED laces, and in return Nike contributes 100 % of its profits to support programs that offer HIV/AIDS education and medication in Africa.

While in South Africa, Kobe also visited the Life Center, one of Johannesburg’s most iconic skyscrapers and the site of Nike’s ambitious, tournament installation. Reaching 30 stories or 138 meters into the sky, the building features an interactive LED screen almost half the size of a football pitch.


During this visit to South Africa, Kobe attended the World Cup and an amazing safari.  Check out the video his trip!