Former New York Knicks guard Allan Houston paid a visit to Clinton Hill's Pratt Institute Saturday as part of a five-borough tour to promote his charity, Father Knows Best.
The organization aims to serve as a resource for fathers on becoming better parents and advocating for stronger family relationships through basketball.
“A lot of kids grow up not having their fathers or a father figure. You have a coach or a mentor or someone who plays that role for you and a lot of times it’s your coach,” Houston told Patch.“Some men will take under their wing three, four or five kids, and it impacts their lives and to me it transforms them in behavior, [their] social environment, their education and critical thinking.
"All those things make you who you are and no matter what you do in life you’re going to have to have these things to live out the life that God has given you, and I think that’s what we wanted to share.”
The daylong event unfolded in two sessions. Morning festivities featured Allan and friends Iman Shumpert (New York Knicks) and Jerry Stackhouse (Brooklyn Nets) playing various basketball games and drills with approximately 200 fathers and their children.
In the second session, Allen got down to business talking to kids about how to play basketball like a professional in every facet of the game. He then spoke to the fathers about how to be better men for their children off the court.
Family was the theme of the day and there were countless activities for everyone to enjoy together. Big and small kids of all ages had the chance to try their hand at the newly released Xbox Kinect game, NBA Baller Beats, an interactive video game using a real ball.
The day was fueled by live music, giveaways, food and bonding to celebrate the entire family unit.
“We don’t just address an issue and raise awareness; it’s not enough to in this realm of development and families. You have to have training mechanisms,” Houston said.
“Someone is going to raise our kids, whether it’s us or someone else. So we need to be the ones doing it.”