Fans Step in to Support Chess Champ Experiencing Homelessness

By Tiarra Mukherjee Mar 20, 2019

Last weekend, 8-year-old Tanitoluwa Adewumi won New York’s state chess tournament for students in kindergarten through third grade. Winning a statewide championship is an impressive feat, but it’s even more impressive when you consider that Adewumi managed it while living in a homeless shelter. He was introduced to chess at his elementary school less than a year ago, and already has seven trophies to his name.

The third-grader and his family, who are refugees from Nigeria, fled their home in fear of the Boko Haram terrorist organization in 2017. They are currently waiting for a decision on their asylum request to stay in the United States. After The New York Times wrote about Adewumi on March 16, an outpouring of public support resulted in a GoFundMe page that has already raised more than $190,000 to put them in their own home. The fundraising goal was $50,000.

His family posted an update on the campaign page today:


To whom much is given, much is required. We need a home, He gave us, our needs for legal assistance, for job, living—all has been met. So we take our blessing and give them back to God and to the World. We are to create the Tanitoluwa Adewumi Foundation to share the generosity of others to those in need.