SANTO DOMINGO - Al Horford has done plenty already for basketball in the Dominican Republic, especially in terms of raising its profile as a member of the national team.
Now the NBA star is doing something else that's very important. The 31-year-old big man is helping to rebuild outdoor basketball courts in his homeland.
The plan is to reconstruct at least three other courts in the Dominican Republic over the next couple of years.
Horford, who shone for the Florida Gators before turning professional 10 years ago, will also share his basketball expertise with boys and girls by holding eight clinics over the next two summers.
What's more is that Horford and Banco Popular will provide the money for four scholarships to cover the costs for four Dominican students to attend high school in the US.
"Over the past 20 years basketball has grown a lot more in the Dominican, and there's a hunger," Horford said to the Boston Globe. "People want to learn it; they want to play it and just I feel like camps and things like that are just not enough. We need to keep doing more to promote the game and make it better."
Having good courts is something that a lot of basketball players may take for advantage but no so in the Dominican Republic. Horford knows that he hails from a poor country and that facilities are limited.
"I'm always grateful when I'm able to do anything for the community, because they really need it," he said. "People are very happy and appreciative of it. It doesn’t matter if you do a little or a lot. I mean, they're just very grateful we're taking the time and trying to make a difference."