NBA All-Star James Harden Takes 20 Single Moms, Kids Holiday Shopping

Houston Rockets' super star, James Harden, took 20 single moms and their children holiday shopping Sunday afternoon.
Houston Rockets’ superstar, James Harden, took 20 single moms and their children holiday shopping Sunday afternoon. (photo: KHOU 11 News)

HOUSTON – There’s no telling how many kids dream of what it would be like to be on the same team as James Harden; on Sunday, 40 local kids found out.

The Houston Rockets superstar and his mom took 20 single mothers and their kids, all dressed in “Team Harden” T-shirts and blue Santa hats, holiday shopping at a South Houston Target store.

“Growing up, my mom was by her lonesome, so I had to do a lot, me, my brother, and my sister,” said Harden. “So I can kind of relate.”

“I was trying to guide the moms in a direction so they can help guide their kids in a better direction,” said Monja Willis, Harden’s mother.

Sunday’s event marked the fourth year in a row this mother and son, and his siblings have paid it forward. “I don’t want to say too much because I’m gonna get teary eyed,” said Demetrias, who was shopping with her grandson she’s helping raise. “I’m getting teary eyed right now. I don’t wanna cry, okay? But it means a lot to me. It really does.”

Others had trouble holding back that emotion.  “I’m really appreciative of this,” said Tammy Copeland, a single mother of three young kids who was taking part in the event. “I work and I go to school, and I’m a single mother of three kids. Very hard, but things like this, God just keeps on blessing me.”

But the emotion for most of these kids as they filled their shopping carts was joy, an emotion contagious even to an NBA All-Star.  “Yeah, he’s a big kid,” said Willis. “Don’t tell him I said that.”

A big kid and 40 of his new friends creating a picture perfect holiday memory.

“They’re never gonna forget this,” said Copeland.

BBVA also gave each mom $100 savings certificates for each child taking part in the shopping spree to open a new savings account.

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