Formed in 2015, the Just a Kid Foundation travels the globe, building basketball courts, running basketball camps, and mentoring aspiring student-athletes in underdeveloped communities.
We teach the skills and values our founder, Jacob Burke, developed through the sport of basketball – dedication, pride, and entrepreneurship. We strive to inspire children to want to become valuable members of society by paying it forward to others, just as the foundation has paid it forward to them.
Our core belief is that any kid from any upbringing can beat the odds to make a difference. Knowledge is power, and the more we know, the more we can make a sustainable impact for generations to come.
Our Founder’s Story
“I realised I was just a kid from Utopia, and if I could make it as basketball player, with all the advantages of growing up in a wealthy country, how inspiring would it be if kids without anything could make the same journey.” – Jacob Burke, Founder
Jacob Burke started playing basketball in a small Canadian town. With the limited exposure to the individuals and opportunities that small a small Canadian town brings, he quickly realized he would have to look further afield to continue his basketball career. Using his initiative to produce highlight tapes, he created a professional career playing in Qatar.
The experience was so rewarding that he became determined to give back. Initially, he made exploratory trips to Africa and ran makeshift basketball camps and clinics.
Today, in addition to managing day to day operations, he personally sponsors 11 kids in Canada and the US, helping them through the visa process to settle on full basketball scholarships at high school. He hopes to see them through college, the ultimate goal.
The young adults who have already begun to see big changes in their lives are the foundation for our future. We are equipping them with the knowledge and vision to take over the foundation and pay it forward for others.
In this sustainable, empowering future, we see a growing network of kids who have grown to become the pillars of a bigger, better Just a Kid Foundation, helping to establish new opportunities within their countries. Using their own personal experiences to help the next generation, we believe in giving those we help the tools to help those around them.