A three-time Pro Bowler and two-time All-Pro selection at fullback, Richardson enjoyed a storied 16-year career with the Minnesota Vikings, Kansas City Chiefs and New York Jets. While known for his blocking ability and paving the way for stars such as Priest Holmes, Larry Johnson and Adrian Peterson, Richardson also led the Chiefs in rushing during the 2000 season. He is considered one of the best fullbacks in NFL history having blocked for 1,000 yards rushers in nine consecutive NFL seasons and received the prestigious "Whizzier" White NFL Man of the Year Award in 2010. He inducted into the Chiefs' Hall of Fame in 2016.
Richardson is also deeply involved with NFL Legends, a community program dedicated to fostering brotherhood between former players, and easing the transition into life after the NFL.
What pushed you to build a school for African children 10,000 miles away?
"I know some people will ask, why would you do something so far away when we have so many issues in our country? We have a lot of advantages here, and we have an opportunity to change the lives of children in a country where they aren't born with those same advantages. By providing education to 200 kids, we will help provide a path to a new way of life for them and their families. Ravi's family is one example of the difference education can make. After I met Ravi, I learned the story of how his dad was the first person in their family to leave India and earn a Ph.D. from Michigan State University. With that education, he was able to bring the rest of his family to the United States, where they have pursued successful careers and continued the cycle by giving back to others."
What is your vision for these children?
"My vision is to give them opportunities they wouldn't have otherwise. Looking back at my life, if I didn't have an education, who knows where I would be today? The power of education is that it allows you, without even leaving your surroundings, to learn about the world and be exposed to things you would never have known about. Maybe we can help set one of these kids on the path to being a future Pulitzer Prize winner, or the next Albert Einstein."
How will education eradicate poverty?
"The Bible reads, 'My people have perished for lack of knowledge.' Without education and the knowledge that comes with it, you don't know about the bigger world that is out there. If we are able to provide education for 200 kids, perhaps one of those kids could come back and change their community's entire situation."