Honors are nice, but Joakim Noah knows that the work has just started for his anti-violence campaign.
The Bulls big man was presented with the NBA Cares Community Assist Award before the Wednesday night game with the Indiana Pacers, not only for his “Rock the Drop’’ campaign, but also for his “You’re Not Alone’’ anti-violence commercial that was put together through Noah’s Arc Foundation.
“When you’re an athlete, you have a platform,’’ Noah said of the NBA honoring him. “I think it’s really important to use it. My father [Yannick] did it when he was an athlete. I’m definitely inspired by the work he did in France. Ever since my dreams of becoming an NBA player, this was part of it—having a foundation, doing positive work.
“Chicago is a place that really needs it. We need as many after school programs as possible. That’s why I’m so proud of wearing that drop because I think it’s a symbol for giving back to the neighborhood. Everybody can be a part of it.’’
The “drop’’ Noah refers to is a necklace that can be found on his website. It’s in the shape of a tear drop, and Noah has been sporting it for weeks, as well as getting his teammates involved, not only wearing the drop, but using social media to help him with his message.
“Obviously, all my teammates have posted it on their social media and that’s big,’’ Noah said. “We’re definitely going to keep pushing it and keep making it better. We’ve got a lot of positive reactions – rappers and actors. It’s been great. We gotta keep pushing it. Obviously, right now we’re very busy with basketball. But this is something I want to keep pushing and making better.
“It’s obviously not for an award, but if it brings awareness to what we’re doing, I’m all for it.’’