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Deng Awak - South Sudanese-Canadian Basket Player | Playing with Purpose Through The WHY Projects

Updated: Oct 29, 2022

Vancouver Dragon's pro athlete Deng Awak who is South Sudanese Canadian playing with purpose to save his NATION via WHY PROJECT.

Stage Name: Deng Awak

Athletic Profession: Basketball Player

Enterprise Name: Founder of wHy Projects




Basketball season playoffs might have just ended recently, and everyone is off to the World Cup GAME fever. However, here at NEECEE LEXY, it is not over yet. Let us introduce you to the 25 years old Vancouver Dragon's basketball player DENG AWAK.

We've anticipated interviewing the Alberta native pro athlete Deng Awak from Sudan to discuss his non-profit platform, the "WHY PROJECT".

Like many sports players, the game is a serious passion. Fortunately, this week's feature interviewee (Deng Awak) has redefined his love for the sport by playing with purpose through educating and supporting causes to bring hope to his nation.

As we all know, South Sudan is the world's youngest nation, still facing many tribal, civics, and social conflicts that have been going on for decades. Ambitious individuals like Deng Awak, who are determined to refine the image of the nation it, 's very important.

I'm honoured to have him here today as our feature guest this week on NEECEE LEXY to discuss his nonprofit organization, WHY PROJECTS, based in Vancouver, BC, Canada.

Tell us about yourself; who is Deng Awak?

My name is Deng, and I'm a 25th years old currently playing for Vancouver Dragon's team. I was born in Khartoum (the capital of Sudan) as the middle child with one older sister (Achol) and a younger brother (Awak). My parents decided to move out of Sudan with the hope to pursue higher education for my siblings and me.

We lived in Egypt for a short while just with my mother and siblings as my father stayed back in Sudan. During the time we lived in Cairo, Egypt. I've developed a strong work ethic and determination by observing my mother working non-stop daily to give us the life she knew we deserved. Fortunately, after a few years, we landed in Alberta, Canada, where I studied middle school.

How did you get started playing Basketball play?

I grew up in a Town called Brooks in Alberta. However, my passion for basketball and education lead me to move to Edmonton and attend The Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) to continue my Accounting degree. It was a significant development year, allowing me to start becoming my person and understand the hardships my family had to overcome.

It's the very reason Why I LOVE Edmonton.

I choose Mount Royal University (MRU) in Calgary, Ab, to complete my degree. During my first year at the University, walking into the "Race and Ethnicity” lecture, gave me a new change of heart and the value of education. I started being more present with learning theories, so I changed from accounting to a Sociology degree. It took an extra year to complete my undergrad, but I feel it was the right decision I made. During the final year of my collegiate basketball career, I was named Captain. Until today I am honoured to be recognized and given such a title.


Who influenced your career as a professional Basketball player?

LeBron James. Watching LeBron play against Detroit in game 5 of the 2007 Eastern Conference Championship.. That’s when I knew I wanted to play basketball and become better than LeBron.

What inspired the inspiration behind the WHY PROJECT?

WHY PROJECTS is a non-profit based in Vancouver, Canada, that advocates for and promotes awareness of the current humanitarian crisis in South Sudan by supporting South Sudanese youth. Our main objective is to achieve understanding and solidarity between different cultures and communities through our Projects.

There are many reasons behind the current conflict, but no solution for sustainability or peace. That's why the mission of WHY PROJECTS is to bring awareness of the current divide that has led to millions fleeing South Sudan while inspiring positive action toward sustainability & peace.

How can someone get involved in supporting WHY PROJECTS if they are interested?

You Help support wHy Projects by checking out some of the incredible apparel we have for sale! or visit our website at and send us an email.


What advice(s) would you give a boy or a girl who wants to become a professional Basketball player?

The best advice I give someone is to stay committed no matter what! There are going to be a lot of highs and lows during the journey. But they should remember that it is a journey and everything that happens during that journey (high or low) is all part of the process.

Congratulation on the recent projects you’ve launched and the T-shirt collection release. Where can our readers purchase them?

All wHy Apparel can be purchased via direct message to wHy Projects on Instagram or Facebook, Email:, and on our website (under construction)

What other projects are you currently working on about this platform WHY PROJECT?

I plan to travel to Lithuania in July & August to coach youth basketball camps and promote awareness for wHy Projects and the mission.

What can we expect from WHY PROJECT in the next two years?

In the next two years, wHy Projects will have a stable connection in South Sudan. Why Projects will also focus on empowering, educating, and supporting South Sudanese as we work to develop South Sudan.

Thank you very much for this fantastic interview Deng. As I've mentioned, we are humbled and honored to have you here at NEECEE LEXY anytime. We wish you all the best in your projects and upcoming games/ Europe tour. We look forward to re-interviewing you shortly.



Vancouver Dragons in Washington State


Instagram: @whybballtraining @Why_projects

Facebook: WHY Projects Youtube: Why Projects


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Great tips, I need to think about what kind of branding I want to convey.

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Hi Neecee, This is Nicole, Such a wonderful sharing! Great Job! All the best! 

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Faith Adodo

Thanks for this wonderful Interview. I love the questions and enthusiasm. 

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