By Tina Nguyen

From the basketball courts to helping the youth in Southern Nevada, former NBA player Mike Brown and his wife, Esther, are making a difference in the valley.

The Browns started a non profit organization in 2007 called The Embracing Project, a community partner with FirstMed Health and Wellness Center. The goal is to help children who have been victims of human trafficking.

Mike shared, “We have the only drop off center in Vegas. So we work with metro, we work with the detectives, and if they get a young person off the streets in a bad situation, they can drop them off at the Embracing Project.”

Esther said, “I just saw a need to improve the community that I live in. I just think we’re here on planet Earth, and we have to make this place better than what it is.”

“My wife used to do it right out of her car and go around and have clothes and hygiene products in her car,” recalled Mike. “She’d be on Boulder Highway, getting youth and trying to help that way. So we’ve come a long way to now have a physical building.”

Located on 300 East Charleston near Casino Center Boulevard, The Embracing Project is a center that gives victims resources and tools to get back on their feet.

Esther said, “They can find a group of amazing advocates that will help them with anything they need. From clothing to hygiene items, all the primary needs are being met. We also have a school. They have a possibility to enroll in school.”

For the Browns, this is an opportunity to help change someone’s life.

Mike shared, “Some are college graduates, mothers, and fathers themselves. When they come back and speak, they talk to the young people and say ‘I was you 9 years ago, and this is what I’m doing now. So, you can get out of this, I’m proof. Here’s my number if you need to call me.’ So they call come back and want to help.”

For more information on how you can help, visit https://theembracingproject.org/.

This story was originally published on KTNV. To view the entire article, visit www.ktnv.com.