Celebrities play a crucial role in charity work as they donate some of their income to charity organizations. This way, they draw attention to certain causes and encourage their fans to do the same. According to statistics, in 2017, 410 billion dollars were spent on charity in the US alone.
On a global level, 41% of charity funds were given to support the people affected by natural disasters, and 31% to support civil and charitable organizations operating outside the country. The rest of the money went to help with educational, animal-related, and human rights issues. Let’s take a look at athletes who give the charity the most and how much of the global charity money came from them!
Charitable Leagues and Clubs
Among the most generous leagues, NBA Cares, an umbrella organization created by the NBA in 2005, bringing together all kinds of charitable activities, stands out. The NBA itself is not necessarily behind every initiative, though. They often cooperate with organizations to make an impact in a relevant area. The better-known players cannot rely only on their employer in this area, which is also critical for their brand, so many of them create their foundations.
Often, of course, good intentions alone are not enough for the success of a foundation. Especially, if ulterior motives instead of good ones drive the founder. A study published in 2013 showed that three-quarters of the foundations established by professional athletes do not operate in the way expected of such organizations. The primary goal of professional leagues with charity is to build a bridge between fans and often unreachable players.
This is all the more necessary because the players of the MLB, baseball, and NFL, American football, which have the largest fan bases, are struggling with public image problems. For example, doping scandals, domestic violence, etc. However, the exception proves the rule! Some generous athletes would be popular even without charity work. Let’s take a look at athletes who give the charity the most!
John Cena Stands Up for Good Causes!
The professional athlete and actor is an active supporter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. He is the one who granted the most wishes! In 2012, Cena supported and drew attention to a campaign that raised $2 million for a breast cancer foundation. He also donated $2 million to the FlipOps Foundation. He asked his fans to contribute one million dollars, and he will add the other half to the organization which supports the sports rehabilitation of veteran soldiers!
Athletes Who Give Charity the Most
Talking about huge, muscled wrestlers, who are marshmallows on the inside, we can’t leave out Dwayne Johnson! He is a big supporter of giving people with disabilities equal rights in society and the film industry. He joined the Ruderman Family Foundation, a charity organization fighting to ensure that the film entertainment industry accepts people with disabilities. Dwayne Johnson loves to be generous with his fans and those who deserve good deeds.
There is an unbelievable story on online sportsbook sites in the Netherlands. The wrestler and actor surprised an entire movie theatre with free ice cream, but he prepared a much more special gift for someone. The war veteran, Oscar Rodriguez, got the surprise of his life! He is also a bodybuilder who provides free food to women who are victims of domestic violence, as well as takes care of his elderly mother alone could drive home in a custom-made SUV after watching the movie, which, by the way, belonged to the Rock!
Cristiano Ronaldo Knows What Living in Poverty is Like!
One of the athletes who give the charity the most is Cristiano Ronaldo, who went through a lot of difficulties as a child since he grew up in poverty. However, he never gave up on his dreams of becoming a professional soccer player, and when his hard work paid off, he became one of the most famous soccer players. The soccer star never forgot where he came from, and perhaps this is the main motivator behind his regular charity work to help children with similar lives.
For example, in 2017, he paid the costs of building a children’s hospital in Chile with an Italian businessman. Though, this was not the only South American children’s hospital they built with his help. He regularly donates blood, which is why he refuses to get a tattoo. On the one hand, because of the risk of infection, and on the other hand, a newly tattooed person cannot donate blood. They have to wait six months to become fit to donate blood again.
Like many stars, he also supports the work of UNICEF. It was also exemplary when, instead of displaying the replica of the Ballon d’Or award he won in 2013, he auctioned it off and received around 500,000 dollars in exchange for it. Of course, he donated it to a foundation that helps children with severe and incurable illnesses, and the list of charities the 22Bet Sportsbook star supports is far from over!
It’s not over…
Years ago, Cristiano Ronaldo met the boy whose parents were killed by a terrorist in Beirut a few weeks ago. Forty people died during the attack, and 200 people were injured. After the tragic incident, the story of the three-year-old Haidar Moustafa spread like wildfire on social media. The small child was close to one of the explosions, and his face was injured during the attack. Unfortunately, his mother and father did not survive.
The little boy loved football, his favorite team was Real Madrid, and he adored Cristiano Ronaldo. A Lebanese reporter took the initiative on Twitter so that the boy could meet Ronaldo. The message reached the soccer icon, who leaped into action. He gave Haidar the surprise of his life when the soccer team flew him to Madrid for a few days with some of his family and showed him everything from the locker rooms to a training session.
Athletes Who Give Charity the Most – Djokovic
Thanks to his tennis tournament victories and numerous advertising contracts, the multi-millionaire Novak Djokovic willingly donates his income to the disadvantaged and supports causes dear to him. Novak Djokovic is particularly concerned about the fate of children living in his home country, where the minimum wage is around 400-500 euros per month.
Djokovic, who made his fortune through tennis and has phenomenal odds at 22Bet Sportsbook, generously supports countless charitable causes. For example, the foundation bearing his name donated 94,000 euros to renovate a school in Serbia. He also opened a restaurant in Serbia that offers free food to the homeless and other people who need it. He once said that he earns so much that he could feed all of Serbia.
Djokovic, whose childhood was defined by the war in Yugoslavia, cares about the issue of the fate of Serbian children, especially. In 2015, his foundation teamed up with the World Bank on their behalf. Seeing his generosity, UNICEF asked him to be a goodwill ambassador to Serbia in 2015. The Royal Order of St Sava is the highest honor in the Serbian Orthodox Church, which he earned by contributing financially to renovating church buildings in his home country.
Hamilton is Pretty Charitable!
Lewis Hamilton finished fifth in the Sunday Times charity list, making him one of the athletes who give the charity the most. The list was not put together based on the amount of money spent on a specific charity but based on what percentage of the person’s income was donated. For Lewis Hamilton, this number is around seven percent, meaning that he donated about 20 million of his approximately 300 million pounds salary.
He founded his organization, Mission 44, which helps young people from various backgrounds get into motorsports. According to online sportsbook sites in the Netherlands, Hamilton is ahead of names on the list, such as Liverpool footballer Mohamed Salah, who has donated £2.5 million to health organizations, giving away six percent of his fortune.
The seven-time world champion Formula 1 driver is committed to making our world a better place, which is why he is championing countless causes. He is so dedicated that he only signed his latest contract with Mercedes if they cooperated with him in a joint charity foundation, supporting the fight for acceptance within motorsport. With the Lewis Hamilton Foundation, he also supports the fight against environmental pollution, hunger, and AIDS. He also donates to hospitals and children’s homes.
Athletes Who Give Charity the Most
The younger Williams sister Serena supports more than ten charity organizations and countless social causes. That is why UNICEF chose him as its ambassador. She is passionate about helping children catch up with education in African and Asian countries. The determination you can see on her at the tennis court also shows outside of it, using it to help many people.
The former American world number one tennis player, André Agassi, is among the athletes who give the charity the most. He spent a fifth of his $175 million fortune on educating children through his foundation. Former basketball player Dikembe Mutombo also has a big heart. The legend, who retired from the Houston Rockets in 2009, donated money to build a hospital in Congo in 2006. He supported healthcare organizations with around 20 million of his fortune of 75 million dollars.
David Beckham supports countless programs, including the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, of which the former star soccer player is an ambassador. He also does charity work with his wife, Victoria, supporting young people in wheelchairs. Eli Manning, the American football player, also donates constantly. For instance, he donated 2.5 million dollars to the Mississippi Children’s Hospital.
LeBron James is at the Top of the List!
A different sense of mission guides the four-time NBA champion on and off the basketball court. Born in Akron, James pays special attention to the youth of his hometown. The LeBron James Family Foundation helps almost 1,500 talented but disadvantaged students to get a good education. They provide them with a mentoring program and organize different programs. He fights to reduce the number of hungry children in America, and you can always count on him when it comes to charity.
The star player of the Los Angeles Lakers has already donated millions of dollars to charitable causes. However, he keeps surpassing all expectations with his generosity. The athlete, who has a fortune of more than a billion dollars, teamed up with the University of Akron so that local students who deserve it can study for free at the higher education institutions in his hometown. He also offered almost 100 million dollars to start the scholarship program.
Athletes Who Give Charity the Most – Messi
In 2014, the Argentine national team played in the World Cup final against the German national team, but in the end, they lost. A journalist Alfonso Ussia claimed, among other things, that Messi received nandrolone, a performance-enhancing substance, before the World Cup final. After the World Cup final, they chose Messi as the best player in the tournament. However, due to the accusation, many questioned it. In the end, the Lionel Messi Foundation sued the paper, and the court ruled in favor of Messi.
He received around 7200 euros as compensation from the newspaper, which he donated to charity to the Doctors Without Borders. Lionel Messi also gives money to people in need regularly. For example, he had a big shipment delivered to the Chaco province in Argentina through UNICEF, of which he is a goodwill ambassador.
Since November 2018, at least 300 medical packages have arrived. All in all, Messi helped the locals, including approximately 37,000 children, with around 100,000 euros. You also have the chance to help! Check out our article about horse racing for charity – make a change by gambling!