SEATTLE, Washington — Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the most recognized athletes in the world. Coming from an impoverished background, Ronaldo worked tirelessly to achieve what he has today. As someone who came from an impoverished background, Ronaldo has not forgotten his upbringing and has given to various charitable and relief organizations throughout his career. The soccer star was even named the world’s most charitable sportsperson in 2015.
After the 2015 earthquake in Nepal, Ronaldo donated €7 million ( $7.8 million) to the Save The Children’s earthquake relief fund in Nepal. He donated that specific amount because seven is the number on his soccer jersey. After the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami, Ronaldo saw a survivor wearing his number seven Portugal shirt. Ronaldo helped raise money which went towards rebuilding the area and years later got to meet the boy who wore his shirt.
FIFA’s 11 for Health Initiative
Ronaldo alongside fellow superstar athlete Lionel Messi and other notable soccer players teamed up for FIFA’s 11 for Health Initiative. The initiative aims to educate children regarding important subjects like drug addiction, HIV, obesity and malaria. The organization hopes to raise children’s awareness about these issues, while also teaching the kids how to prevent them. Soccer skills are used to help kids better understand how to prevent and deal with these conditions.
Ronaldo’s Work with Save the Children
In 2013, Ronaldo became Save the Children’s new Global Artist Ambassador. Save the Children provides impoverished children with economic opportunities, education and health care. In his role as a Global Ambassador, Ronaldo has helped children fight against hunger and obesity. Ronaldo has also served as an advocate for refugees in his work with the organization. His recent work has dealt with the response to refugee children escaping the violence in Myanmar. Ronaldo’s donation to the children who are fleeing the refugee crisis is being used for safe spaces where children can play, socialize and recover from the violence. Ronaldo also donated clothing and medical care to Syrian refugee children in 2016.
Other Philanthropic Work
Cristiano Ronaldo’s charitable efforts also include a variety of other activities and donations throughout his career. He helped fund a pediatric hospital in Santiago, Chile, with the hope of building more hospitals in other South American cities. Children’s medical relief has also been an issue Ronaldo has addressed. He donated $165,000 to a cancer center in Portugal. In addition to paying for a 9-year-old boy’s cancer treatment in 2012, he also paid for a brain operation for a 10-month-old baby so that the baby wouldn’t experience daily seizures.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s charitable efforts show the impact that can be made with a celebrity platform. From helping impoverished or sick children to donating money to relief efforts and even getting behind valuable causes, Ronaldo’s charitable efforts are a great example that others can follow to help those around the world who are less fortunate.
– Zachary Laird