While many young athletes have fond memories of enjoying bus rides with teammates, students at Warith Deen Mohammed High School (WDMH) have had a different–and more cramped–pregame experience.

WDMH is a private Islamic high school located in East Atlanta, and it's associated with the Mohammed Schools of Atlanta (MSOA).  

Although WDMH's athletes dominate the court, the team has been facing one persistent dilemma— transportation. Farad Abdurrahman, who coaches WDMH's basketball team, told Atlanta Black Star he's been needing a bus for a few years now. 

"We had to get to the games, so I used to have my assistant coaches packing up the cars," Abdurrahman said. "Most times we were in cars, and a few times we took Uber and Lyft. But most times, we pack them up in my minivans and two other people's cars [with] a couple of parents, and we drive them all around. And we have to play everywhere, so these are long rides."

However, the WDMH basketball team's days of cramped car rides are over thanks to a generous gift from a group of Atlanta-area businessmen. It turns out that assistant coach Gary Weems had a beneficial connection that helped the team in its time of need— entrepreneur and philanthropist Jason Lobdell.

Lobdell is affiliated with the "Circle of CEOs," a five-person group of young Black businessmen in Atlanta. He recruited the assistant of his fellow associates to help out the basketball team.

"I called my brothers and said, 'Look, there's this school, and they need help getting to their games, and so I thought, what better way than to get them a bus,'" Lobdell stated.

"I wanted them to look at me and say he's from my neighborhood," Lobdell added. "[Other CEOs] might not be, but they linked together, they came back, and they're making an impact. And not just that–those are some bright students at that school."

After about a month of searching, Abdurrahman found the perfect bus for the squad's needs. Shortly after that, the Circle of CEOs provided the WDMH basketball team with the $27,000 bus customized to feature the school's logo on the outside.

"They're holding back the tears," Weems said after the bus was unveiled. "You can really see the joy and the appreciation that they feel from someone giving back like this."

"I'm constantly telling the kids, listen, it is your duty once you get older and become successful in giving back to this community," Abdurrahman added, citing the importance of charity in Islam.