Abdirahman (Abdi) Mukhtar is passionate about the health of the young people in his community. A coach for numerous sports teams, mentor, and passionate youth worker over two decades, he is widely known on the West Bank of Minneapolis and in the Somali American community in Minnesota for his community work. When he realized opioid overdoses were killing East African young adults in heartbreaking numbers, he set about eliminating the shame that often prevents his Somali community from talking about addiction and getting help for children or grandchildren. He founded Daryeel (the Somali word for “care”) Youth to be a non-judging beacon of light for young people in the throes of active addiction. He welcomes all to his Friday night gatherings, where he supplies food, clean clothing, personal hygiene products, a first aid kit with Narcan, and dressing for wounds. His compassion has earned him the trust of his community, especially parents who are trying to help their children reclaim a healthy life.
About The McKnight Foundation
The McKnight Foundation, a Minnesota-based family foundation, advances a more just, creative, and abundant future where people and planet thrive. Established in 1953, the McKnight Foundation is deeply committed to advancing climate solutions in the Midwest; building an equitable and inclusive Minnesota; and supporting the arts in Minnesota, neuroscience, and international crop research.
About The Virginia McKnight Binger Awards
The Foundation created the Awards in Human Service in 1985 and renamed them ten years later as a tribute to Virginia McKnight Binger, who served the Foundation for nearly 50 years as a board member, president from 1974 to 1987, and honorary chair until her death in 2002. Her personal compassion and generosity set the standard for the Foundation’s work.
Like Virginia McKnight Binger, those who receive these awards are acutely aware of others’ needs. They are nominated by someone familiar with their work, and the nominations are researched and evaluated independently. To qualify, nominees must live in Minnesota.
About The Minnesota Council of Nonprofits
The Minnesota Council of Nonprofits (MCN) was founded in 1987 to meet the increasing information needs of nonprofits and to convene nonprofits to address issues facing the sector. It is the largest state association of nonprofits in the United States. Through MCN, nonprofits join together across interest areas to work on issues of common concern to all.
McKnight partners with MCN to administer the Virginia McKnight Binger Unsung Hero Awards.
Videos produced by Adja Gildersleve.